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SOUTH CAROLINA PRENUPTIAL AGREEMENTS

South Carolina Prenuptial Agreements

At Sodoma Law York, our attorneys know that when people hear the phrase “prenuptial agreement” they think it means planning for divorce. Hiring an experienced family law attorney can ensure that your prenuptial agreement not only simplifies certain aspects of divorce if it unfortunately occurs, but that its utility extends far beyond divorce. When a couple enters marriage, having discussed all of the financial and other issues addressed in a prenuptial agreement, it means they’ve already had the experience of sharing important personal information and planning for the future. They have a clear understanding of their situation and each other’s expectations. They have created a solid foundation for their relationship to grow. Having done this work prior to the wedding often sets the groundwork for a more successful marriage in the long term.

Some South Carolina couples choose prenuptial agreements because they have substantial individual or family assets. Others wish to specify how debt and other financial issues will be handled in the marriage. Some people, entering a second marriage, want to avoid mistakes made in their first. Many couples just want to clarify their expectations and make sure they are entering marriage on the same page about important issues.

South Carolina Prenuptial Agreement Law

While most people have prenuptial agreements prepared in order to deal with financial issues, in South Carolina, a prenuptial agreement can address many topics, including:

  • The rights and obligations of the parties with respect to any of their property
  • The right to buy, sell, encumber, manage, or control property
  • What will happen to the couple’s property upon separation, marital dissolution, death (to include estate planning), or any other event
  • The modification or elimination of spousal support
  • Estate planning in order to carry out the provisions of the agreement
  • Ownership and disposition of the death benefit of a life insurance policy
  • Any other matter, including their personal rights and obligations, so long as the inclusion of that matter does not violate public policy or a criminal law.

(Note: A prenuptial agreement cannot limit the right of a child to child support.)

Contract law rules apply in governing the execution and enforceability of prenuptial agreements in South Carolina. A prenuptial agreement must be in writing and signed by both parties. The agreement becomes effective at the time of the marriage. The parties may amend or revoke the agreement after marriage if they wish, but again, must do so in writing with both parties’ signature.

In order for a South Carolina prenuptial agreement to be enforceable, the court will look at three key factors/questions:

  • Was the agreement obtained through fraud, duress, or mistake, or through misrepresentation or nondisclosure of material facts?
  • Is the agreement unconscionable?
  • Have the facts and circumstances changed since the agreement was executed so as to make its enforcement unfair and unreasonable?

The best way to make certain that your prenuptial agreement covers all the issues important to you, and is likely to be enforced if you need it to be, is to have it drafted and reviewed by an experienced South Carolina family law attorney. In order to ensure fairness, it is best for both individuals to be represented by their own attorneys. Ideally, the agreement will be prepared and signed well before the wedding to avoid the suggestion later that one party signed the agreement under duress.

The attorneys at Sodoma Law York, located in Rock Hill, South Carolina, have years of experience drafting prenuptial agreements for individuals with both significant and complex assets and those with more modest estates. Our Family Law attorneys get great satisfaction from helping our clients enter their marriages with peace of mind and the knowledge that they’re prepared for whatever the future brings. Sodoma Law York drafts and reviews prenuptial agreements for clients in both South Carolina and North Carolina. We look forward to helping you arrive at a prenuptial agreement that meets your needs and invite you to contact us with any questions you may have.

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