Marriage Contracts

There are a number of reasons why people getting married may wish to enter into a contract prior to the wedding, or even at some point during the marriage. For instance, one spouse may have substantially more assets or more debts than the other. One of the parties may be involved in a business venture which is exceptionally risky, or may be a shareholder or partner who needs to protect other shareholders and partners in the event of a break up of their marriage. When individuals get married for second and third times, they may have accumulated assets which they wish to protect or have available for the children of their first marriages. In all of these examples, a prenuptial or marriage agreement can be used very flexibly to suit the particular purposes of the couple.

Some matters cannot be dealt with in prenuptial or marriage contracts. For example, while a marriage contract can address issues regarding the right to direct the education and moral training of children, it cannot deal with matters depicting the right to custody or access to children. Further, a provision purporting to limit a spouse's right to possession of the matrimonial home is unenforceable.