Prenuptial Agreements Cannot Deal With Issues of Child Welfare
Prenuptial agreements can be extremely useful tools for outlining the terms of a potential future divorce before you get married. They help you protect your assets or investments, particularly those you want to preserve for children from a previous marriage. However, prenups can’t be used for just anything—there are certain terms that will not be able to be enforced. Among those terms are issues related to the welfare of any children in the relationship.
Child welfare issues you can’t cover with a prenup
There are many child-related issues in a divorce that are financial by nature, but still cannot be covered with a prenup, because they’re influenced instead by the child’s best interests. It is impossible to determine what will be in the child’s best interests in the future, which is what you’d essentially be trying to do by including child-related issues in the contract.
Child support, for example, will be based on the child’s specific needs and each parent’s ability to pay at that time. You can’t say with any certainty what the child’s needs will be in terms of medicine, schooling or otherwise five, 10 years into the future.
The same is true for child custody and visitation arrangements. You can only determine what is in the child’s best interest at the present time. You can’t have one party sign away rights to custody in the future, because it might end up being in that child’s best interest to be placed with that party should a divorce come to pass.
Courts do allow parents to create their own parenting plans outside of the court, but this is an entirely separate issue to prenuptial agreements. The only thing you can do with a prenup related to your children is provide for children you have from a previous marriage, implementing language to protect assets that are supposed to be saved for them.
For more information about the limitations of prenups, contact a trusted Long Island family attorney at Bryan L. Salamone & Associates.