Prenuptial “prenup”, Post-Marital, Cohabitation Agreements

Prenuptial and Post-Nuptial Agreements

Prenuptial agreements, also known as “prenups”, are contracts entered into by two people before their marriage. Post-nuptial agreements are the same except they are entered into after marriage. These agreements decide how property and debts will be divided should divorce or legal separation occur. They also typically address what will occur with property and debts if one party passes away.

A prenuptial agreement does not affect rights of any children a couple may have while married. Washington state prenuptial and post-nuptial agreements are not allowed to address child custody or child support issues by law.

Miller Law Group can prepare and negotiate prenuptial and post-nuptial agreements, and review them once divorce or legal separation is a concern.  We can determine their impact on your divorce.

Cohabitation Agreements

Unmarried couples who are living together can also create a contract that gives specifics with regard to legal rights and responsibilities the parties have to each other as well as property ownership and division should the relationship end.  It often determines how debts will be divided as well. It is a helpful way for those in long-term committed relationships to memorialize their expectations.  It also helps guard against the risk that a court will treat the relationship as a meretricious one and treat parties as married for property division purposes.

Miller Law Group can prepare and negotiate cohabitation agreements, and review them once separation is a concern.

Meretricious Relationships

In Washington State, a court may decide that a couple that has cohabitated in a stable, marriage-like relationship for a significant period of time is in a “meretricious relationship.” If that decision is made by a court, the couple is treated as married for practical purposes.  When this occurs, each party has a 50 percent community interest in property and debts earned during the relationship and the court divides the property and debt acquired during that time accordingly.

Miller Law Group can help navigate the tricky road of separation after a long term meretricious relationship ends, making sure you get what is rightfully yours.