What are Relationship Agreements in North Carolina?
ROAD to RESOLUTION offers services for drafting prenuptial agreements, postnuptial agreements, and cohabitation agreements. These legally binding documents can benefit all parties involved as they outline the legal obligations of a relationship or marriage in the event that it changes or ends.
Prenuptial agreement: A legal document entered into before marriage, also known as a prenup, that couples can use to establish the financial and property rights of each spouse in the event of a divorce.
Postnuptial agreement: A legal document, entered into during marriage, also known as a postnup, that allows married couples to establish the financial and property rights of each spouse after the marriage has already taken place.
Cohabitation agreement: A legal document that outlines the rights and responsibilities of unmarried couples living together.
Our team is experienced in drafting prenups and postnups, as well as cohabitation agreements in North Carolina to ensure that you and your partner are on the same page. We can guide you through the process to align your financial, emotional, and familial interests if your marriage or relationship ends.
What are the Benefits of a Prenuptial Agreement?
If you are recently engaged or thinking about getting engaged, a prenuptial agreement may be of interest to you and your partner. A prenup is drafted and finalized prior to the marriage that outlines asset and debt distribution, property division, alimony, and other financial issues in case of divorce. Prenups offer many benefits to couples and are drafted with consideration to their interests and unique situations.
ROAD to RESOLUTION recommends scheduling a prenuptial agreement consultation immediately after engagement, or, in some cases, before engagement. It is important to allow time for these documents to be drafted and revised so they can be finalized well before you and your partner exchange vows.
If you’re exploring a prenuptial agreement, you may also want to consider Pre “I Do” Education at ROAD to RESOLUTION. Click here to learn more about this unique service that can help prepare you and your partner for the legal aspects of a marriage.
What are the Benefits of a Postnuptial Agreement?
For couples who are already married but would like a document outlining what would happen in the event of separation or divorce, postnuptial agreements can be drafted by a legal professional. There is no time frame or window on these documents as they can be created immediately after marriage or decades later.
Similar to a prenup, a postnup also establishes rights to property and finances if a marriage were to end. This agreement can help couples outline asset and debt protections, provide clarity with property division, address alimony distribution, and explore financial rights and responsibilities.
At ROAD to RESOLUTION, we are committed to drafting these agreements with collaboration and consideration for all involved.
What are the Benefits of a Cohabitation Agreement?
Cohabitation agreements can be helpful legal documents for couples who live together but are not married. In North Carolina, unmarried couples don’t have any type of legally binding contact that would protect individual assets or outline the process of joint asset division if the relationship ends. It can also outline other types of joint assets and/or debt and can provide clarification of legal responsibilities as well as protection of individual property if the relationship ends.
A cohabitation agreement can be especially beneficial if there is co-ownership of property - such as a house, car, or boat - or co-ownership of a business. If you plan to move into a home owned by your partner, or vice versa, a cohabitation agreement could also be beneficial to both parties.
ROAD to RESOLUTION has experience with drafting cohabitation agreements for couples in North Carolina. While these agreements can be drafted at any time of cohabitation, we recommend starting the process prior to making a major purchase together, moving in together, or starting a business together.
1. Can child custody or child support be determined in a prenuptial, postnuptial, or cohabitation agreement? No. In North Carolina, prenups and postnups cannot determine the limit of child support that a child would otherwise receive. It also can not determine custody, visitation, or a co-parenting schedule. If the relationship ends, these topics will be addressed at the time of separation.
2. Can a pet be included in a prenuptial, postnuptial, or cohabitation agreement? Yes. In North Carolina, a pet is considered property, so it can be included in an agreement if the marriage or relationship ends. This can become complex if the pet joined the family after marriage or cohabitation, so it’s helpful to have a legal professional guide you through these discussions.
3. Do my partner and I need to have separate attorneys for these agreements? An attorney is ethically barred from representing “opposing” parties and can only represent one party/spouse. However, the other party/spouse can represent themself.
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