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Are prenuptial agreements allowed in Maryland?

If you're a regular reader of our blog posts then you know that we have touched several times on the topic of prenuptial agreements, particularly their usefulness when it comes to divorce. But while we may have answered a number of questions through these posts, we realize there is an important question we have not touched on yet and it happens to be the one we're asking in today's post title:

Are prenuptial agreements allowed in Maryland?

For those who don't know, prenuptial agreements are called a number of things including: premarital agreements, marital contracts, and several other combinations in between. In any of these cases, the agreement is acting as a contract between spouses that mainly establishes how property will be divided in the event of divorce and whether alimony payments will be awarded and to whom.

It's important to point out that not all aspects of divorce can be accounted for in a prenuptial agreement. Things like child custody and child support cannot be accounted for in one of the legal documents. Such decisions must be made by the court when the time comes.

So are prenuptial agreements allowed in Maryland? The answer is yes. Like any contract though, both parties have to make sure that they are in accordance with the law. This means that they have to draft and submit the agreement prior to marriage, and include all of the necessary elements dictated by state law.

It's important to point out that even if all legal elements are present, a prenuptial agreement may not be considered valid if a person was forced to sign the agreement under duress or if there is an element of fraud involved. This is why it's incredibly important for both spouses to have an experienced family law attorney review the wording of a prenuptial agreement and perhaps even be present at the time of signing to make sure that everything is in accordance with the law.

Source: dhr.state.md.us, "Legal Rights in Marriage & Divorce in Maryland," Accessed July 6, 2015

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