Peaceful Divorce

The Good, The Bad and The Ugly: Prenuptial Agreements

Over the last several years I have seen a number of clients who are entering into their divorces with prenuptial agreements already in place.

As I thought about couples considering what to include in their prenuptial agreements, I remembered an article from many years ago published in The New York Times by Jan Hoffman called “THE RICH: How They Keep It.” Here are some of the more interesting forms of prenuptial agreements Hoffman laid out in her article:

The Renoir Clause: Typically when the wealthy scion intends to wed, the prenup tries to block the new in-laws from the trust accounts. But now dynasties are also fretting about the family heirlooms. So prenups are insuring that art collections, stables, season opera tickets and third homes remain with the original family, "or at least the wife will agree that her mother won't be allowed to visit the country houses," says Eleanor Alter, a New York lawyer who represented Mia Farrow in her custody fight with Woody Allen.

The Pet Clause: "I did one prenup with nine pages just on the joint-custody issue of their Dandie Dinmont terrier," Alter recalls. "One party had primary custody, but the other had visitation rights. If the dog was bred, the one without custody had first pick of the litter; and then there was the question of what to do when the primary custodian went away on weekends -- kennel or temporary transfer of custody?"

The Once-and-Future-Children Clause: As more people try marriage a second or third time, they are trying to predetermine custody and support of their children, including those yet to be conceived. Particularly when the groom is wealthier and decades older than the bride, he may insist he does not want more children and will not spend a nickel on them post-divorce. But these clauses aren't enforceable: The right to conceive cannot be contracted away, and a judge always has final say over child support.

The Disintegration Clause: This is becoming the poorer spouse's biggest cudgel. "A wife should make sure that after five years, the prenup just goes away," advises Norman M. Sheresky, a prominent New York matrimonial lawyer. If the marriage founders after that deadline, she might be entitled to a more lucrative divorce settlement.

The Cost-of-Challenging-the-Prenup Clause: An increasingly typical clause might include the following formula: If a marriage lasts a decade before failing, the wife is assured $10 million, but if she challenges the prenup during divorce proceedings and loses, she gets only $5 million (minus his legal fees).

So what good stories do you have on prenuptial or postnuptial agreements? Let us hear them.

To read Jan Hoffman’s full article, click here.  

The Inside Scoop on the New Mortgage Rules from an Expert
Robert D. Bordett CFP, CDFA
Collaborative Practice and Mediation Services

888 U2AGREE (888.822.4733)

Views: 40


You need to be a member of Peaceful Divorce to add comments!

Join Peaceful Divorce

Become an affiliate of the Happily Divorced! book and audio program! Let Reformed "Killer" Divorce Attorney, Cynthia Tiano, and Dr. Max Vogt, Marriage and Family Psychologist, take you on an adventure into the lives of two families going through the divorce legal system - one doing "legal battle" and the other creating a "peaceful divorce". Learn how to create a Win-Win from their experiences...


Latest Activity

Robert D. Bordett, CFP, CDFA posted a blog post

What Is a Caucus?

One of the guiding values in mediation and collaborative law is transparency. It comes with the territory when one is trying to establish trust with two different parties. Sometimes an issue may arise that one party may wish not to discuss in front of the other. If they both agree, separate meetings may take place. These meetings are called caucuses.Caucuses can be…See More
Oct 22, 2019
Robert D. Bordett, CFP, CDFA posted a blog post

How Important Is the Budget in Divorce Planning?

I think everyone’s least favorite word is BUDGET. Why don’t we want to hear that word? Think about it: We’re asking ourselves to do something we don’t want to do — or worse yet, someone else is asking us to do it. While we might not like them, having a budget does help. In divorce planning — whether you are going to litigation,…See More
Sep 18, 2019
Robert D. Bordett, CFP, CDFA posted a blog post

21st Century Parenting Plans

I remember when the default custody arrangement had one parent as the custodial parent, and the other parent was known as the “Disneyland parent.” They had their children every other weekend, and maybe once during the week for dinner. Today it is more common to see joint parenting time consist of one week on, and one week off or “two-two-five-five” time,…See More
Aug 15, 2019
Robert D. Bordett, CFP, CDFA posted a blog post

Including a Financial Professional in Your Mediation

Very often, couples who are divorcing amicably, or who have straightforward financial situations, will forgo meeting with a financial professional while they go through mediation. Though this may seem logical on its face, “going it alone” may result in unnecessary hardship and inaccurate calculations.  It is easy to simply look at a tax table today and say “I am going…See More
Jul 30, 2019
Robert D. Bordett, CFP, CDFA posted a blog post

What About the House?

Going through divorce means dealing with hundreds of details, some more important than others. One detail that merits extra contemplation is how to deal with the marital home.Does one spouse want to keep it because the children still live there? You don't want to disrupt their lives any more than is already happening. What if the children are grown? Do you still need that much of a house?Here are the three most common means of dealing with the house in divorce:Selling the house and dividing the…See More
Apr 24, 2019




© 2020   Created by Cynthia Tiano, Esq..   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service