Majority of states follows the UPAA or Uniform Prenuptial Agreement Act, which are guidelines that govern the enforceability of marital or prenuptial agreements. The UPAA was passed in Colorado last 2014. According to the UPAA, both spouses should sign the prenuptial agreement and because it is essentially a trade of particular financial terms for their marriage, it will only take effect after the couple has been married.
Colorado Requirements for Prenuptial Agreements
In Colorado, Lewis & Matthews, P.C. says the requirements to ensure enforcement of a prenuptial agreement is similar to other contracts, but with some exceptions. The prenuptial agreement, as well as any future amendments should be written, and not just verbal. Both parties should likewise make reasonable and fair disclosure of their separate properties and financial obligations and assets.
Both parties should also willingly enter into the marital agreement, which is required for all standard contracts and no consideration should be required. This means that one spouse could give up her or his crucial statutory rights because he or she just wants the right to marry and not for any other reason.
In addition, in the event that the prenuptial agreement contains language regarding alimony or spousal maintenance, it shouldn’t be unconscionable or unacceptable during enforcement time. This simply means that Colorado courts won’t enforce a provision for spousal maintenance that’s unreasonable during a legal separation or divorce, even in cases where it was considered very reasonable when the couple signed the prenuptial agreement, says a family law attorney in Denver, CO.
When a Prenuptial Agreement is Not Enforceable in Colorado
Colorado courts will not enforce a marital agreement in the event that the challenging spouse can show proof that:
- He or she signed the prenuptial contract under pressure or involuntarily (forced);
- He or she did not have legal assistance; or
- He or she did not obtain accurate financial disclosures for his or her spouse prior to signing the contract.
As you can see, while drafting a prenuptial agreement may seem straightforward, legal assistance is crucial to ensure that you meet all the requirements under Colorado law so that your contract will be enforceable in the future.