11 Things to Include in a Prenuptial Agreement

Clients Rate Lawyers on our Platform 4.9/5 Stars
based on 4,117 reviews

Jump to Section

Need help with a Prenuptial Agreement?

Post Project Now

Post Your Project (It's Free)

Get Bids to Compare

 Hire Your Lawyer

A prenuptial agreement is a legal contract between two parties before marriage. It details each individual's assets and specifies how the couple will handle financial issues should they choose to divorce.

A prenuptial agreement will help ensure that difficult issues like how to divide assets, alimony, and child support don’t become legal sticking points in the event a divorce happens. This is much more likely to result in an uncontested divorce.

A prenuptial agreement can benefit any couple that intends to marry. Still, they are often associated with wealthy individuals.

Many people also opt to create a separation agreement these days that sets out what will happen after legal separation but before a divorce is finalized.

Here are 11 things to include in a prenuptial agreement.

1. Spouse Information

Like any contract, a prenuptial agreement, or premarital agreement, as they are sometimes known, needs to include the names of both parties. These should be your full legal names.

2. Separate Assets and Debts

Often, there is a section that includes a list of the assets and debts of both spouses before the marriage and excludes these from the agreement.

This can help prevent financial issues later, especially when one spouse has many more assets or liabilities at the time of marriage.

3. Joint Assets and Debts

Another section most prenuptial contracts will address is any joint assets and debts the parties have or will purchase and how those will be divided in the event of a divorce. This might include who gets which assets, who is responsible for which loans or mortgages, etc.

4. Children from Previous Marriage

A prenuptial agreement should have a detailed section that includes items about children from a previous marriage. These days, it’s very common that people will blend their families when they marry, and both spouses might have children from previous relationships.

In the event of a divorce, will these children be included in any of the divorce and child support provisions, and if so, to what extent?

Meet some lawyers on our platform

Kelvin R.

11 projects on CC
View Profile

Albert M.

9 projects on CC
View Profile

Michael M.

183 projects on CC
View Profile

Ralph S.

2 projects on CC
View Profile

5. Marital Responsibilities

Most people have certain expectations of their spouse when they choose to get married. As a result, it’s not uncommon to detail these expectations in a section of a premarital agreement.

Sometimes, these marital responsibilities relate to having and caring for children. Still, it could be anything that both parties agree to.

6. Work

Sometimes, spouses feel they need to formalize their approach to work in their prenuptial agreement.

This could refer to work during the marriage and how it might affect the marriage. Alternatively, it could be a requirement that both spouses continue to work after a divorce, regardless of any spousal support agreements.

7. Family Property

In some cases, certain assets might be considered family property. This might include things like vacation homes or businesses. If you have or plan to have any property like that, you might need to include a section about how they will be shared and used.

Likewise, sometimes one spouse will enter the marriage with the family property of the other – like an heirloom ring. A premarital agreement might include stipulations about returning those kinds of items.

8. Inheritance Rights

In most areas, automatic inheritance rights give a spouse or child automatic property rights. However, suppose the spouses creating a premarital agreement do not want to follow those regulations. In that case, they can include their own provisions in the agreement.

It’s important to note that some places do not allow you to disinherit a spouse or child completely. So it’s always a good idea to find out what is permitted before you draft this section.

9. Property Division in Divorce

Usually, the property is the most significant asset that spouses will acquire in a marriage, so it’s essential to determine how it will be handled in the event of a divorce.

If you have more than one property, you might each choose one or more that you want to have as part of a divorce. Or you might decide to sell all your properties and divide the money from the sale. A lawyer can advise you what your options for property division are.

10. Confidentiality Agreements

Sometimes, mainly when one spouse is well known, a confidentiality agreement will be included in a premarital agreement, or sometimes, even in a postnuptial agreement.

These usually include what each spouse may and may not say about the other and what the penalties for any public statements might be.

11. Spouse Signatures

A prenuptial agreement is a legal document. Like all legal documents, it must be properly completed and signed to be valid and legally binding.

You and your spouse-to-be will need to sign and date the document, and you will usually require one or more witnesses to sign alongside. Both parties will be given a copy of the completed document, too, to have a record of what was agreed.

Get Help Drafting a Prenuptial Agreement

Post a project in ContractsCounsel’s marketplace to receive flat fee bids from lawyers for your project. All lawyers have been vetted by our team and peer-reviewed by our customers for you to explore before hiring.

How ContractsCounsel Works
Hiring a lawyer on ContractsCounsel is easy, transparent and affordable.
1. Post a Free Project
Complete our 4-step process to provide info on what you need done.
2. Get Bids to Review
Receive flat-fee bids from lawyers in our marketplace to compare.
3. Start Your Project
Securely pay to start working with the lawyer you select.

Meet some of our Lawyers

Jo Ann J. on ContractsCounsel
View Jo Ann
5.0 (6)
Member Since:
February 22, 2021

Jo Ann J.

Partner
Free Consultation
Boston, MA
27 Yrs Experience
Licensed in MA
Suffolk Universtiy Law School

Jo Ann has been practicing for over 20 years, working primarily with high growth companies from inception through exit and all points in between. She is skilled in Mergers & Acquisitions, Contractual Agreements (including founders agreements, voting agreements, licensing agreements, terms of service, privacy policies, stockholder agreements, operating agreements, equity incentive plans, employment agreements, vendor agreements and other commercial agreements), Corporate Governance and Due Diligence.

Don G. on ContractsCounsel
View Don
5.0 (10)
Member Since:
March 1, 2021

Don G.

Attorney at law
Free Consultation
Lafayette, LA
22 Yrs Experience
Licensed in TX
Texas Tech School of Law

Texas licensed attorney specializing for 20 years in Business and Contract law. My services include General Business Law Advisement; Contract Review and Drafting; Legal Research and Writing, including Motion Practice; Business Formation; Article or Instructive Writing; and more. For more insight into my skills and experience, please feel free to visit my LinkedIn profile or contact me with any questions.

Benjamin W. on ContractsCounsel
View Benjamin
5.0 (26)
Member Since:
March 11, 2021

Benjamin W.

Founder
Free Consultation
Los Angeles, CA
8 Yrs Experience
Licensed in CA
UCLA School of Law

I am a California-barred attorney specializing in business contracting needs. My areas of expertise include contract law, corporate formation, employment law, including independent contractor compliance, regulatory compliance and licensing, and general corporate law. I truly enjoy getting to know my clients, whether they are big businesses, small start-ups looking to launch, or individuals needing legal guidance. Some of my recent projects include: -drafting business purchase and sale agreements -drafting independent contractor agreements -creating influencer agreements -creating compliance policies and procedures for businesses in highly regulated industries -drafting service contracts -advising on CA legality of hiring gig workers including effects of Prop 22 and AB5 -forming LLCs -drafting terms of service and privacy policies -reviewing employment contracts I received my JD from UCLA School of Law and have been practicing for over five years in this area. I’m an avid reader and writer and believe those skills have served me well in my practice. I also complete continuing education courses regularly to ensure I am up-to-date on best practices for my clients. I pride myself on providing useful and accurate legal advice without complex and confusing jargon. I look forward to learning about your specific needs and helping you to accomplish your goals. Please reach out to learn more about my process and see if we are a good fit!

Rebecca L. on ContractsCounsel
View Rebecca
5.0 (1)
Member Since:
April 6, 2021

Rebecca L.

Attorney/Owner
Free Consultation
San Diego, CA
12 Yrs Experience
Licensed in CA, DC, VA
New England School of Law

I absolutely love helping my clients buy their first home, sell their starters, upgrade to their next big adventure, or transition to their next phase of life. The confidence my clients have going into a transaction and through the whole process is one of the most rewarding aspects of practicing this type of law. My very first class in law school was property law, and let me tell you, this was like nothing I’d ever experienced. I remember vividly cracking open that big red book and staring at the pages not having the faintest idea what I was actually reading. Despite those initial scary moments, I grew to love property law. My obsession with real estate law was solidified when I was working in Virginia at a law firm outside DC. I ran the settlement (escrow) department and learned the ins and outs of transactions and the unique needs of the parties. My husband and I bought our first home in Virginia in 2012 and despite being an attorney, there was so much we didn’t know, especially when it came to our HOA and our mortgage. Our real estate agent was a wonderful resource for finding our home and negotiating some of the key terms, but there was something missing in the process. I’ve spent the last 10 years helping those who were in the same situation we were in better understand the process.

Jeremiah C. on ContractsCounsel
View Jeremiah
4.9 (18)
Member Since:
March 5, 2021

Jeremiah C.

Partner/Attorney at Law
Free Consultation
Houston, TX
15 Yrs Experience
Licensed in NV, TX
Thomas Jefferson

Creative, results driven business & technology executive with 24 years of experience (13+ as a business/corporate lawyer). A problem solver with a passion for business, technology, and law. I bring a thorough understanding of the intersection of the law and business needs to any endeavor, having founded multiple startups myself with successful exits. I provide professional business and legal consulting. Throughout my career I've represented a number large corporations (including some of the top Fortune 500 companies) but the vast majority of my clients these days are startups and small businesses. Having represented hundreds of successful crowdfunded startups, I'm one of the most well known attorneys for startups seeking CF funds. My engagements often include legal consultation & advisory roles, drafting of NDAs, TOS & Privacy Policies, contracts and corporate law, business strategy advice & consulting, in-house counsel, Founder & entrepreneur guidance and other roles as needed by my clients. I hold a Juris Doctor degree with a focus on Business/Corporate Law, a Master of Business Administration degree in Entrepreneurship, A Master of Education degree and dual Bachelor of Science degrees. I look forward to working with any parties that have a need for my skill sets.

Meghan P. on ContractsCounsel
View Meghan
4.8 (5)
Member Since:
February 15, 2021

Meghan P.

Attorney
Free Consultation
Denver
5 Yrs Experience
Licensed in CA
University of Dayton

I am a licensed attorney and a member of the California Bar. I graduated from the University of Dayton School of Law's Program in Law and Technology. I love IP, tech transfers, licensing, and how the internet and developing technology is changing the legal landscape. I've interned at both corporations and boutique firms, and I've taken extensive specialized classes in intellectual property and technology law.

Charlotte L. on ContractsCounsel
View Charlotte
4.6 (2)
Member Since:
February 25, 2021

Charlotte L.

Self-Employed Legal Consultant
Free Consultation
Arlington, VA
9 Yrs Experience
Licensed in DC, VA
University of Virginia School of Law

I hold a B.S. in Accounting and a B.A. in Philosophy from Virginia Tech (2009). I received my J.D. from the University of Virginia School of Law in 2012. I am an associate member of the Virginia Bar and an active member of the DC bar. Currently, I am working as a self-employed legal consultant and attorney. Primarily my clients are start-up companies for which I perform various types of legal work, including negotiating and drafting settlement, preparing operating agreements and partnership agreements, assisting in moving companies to incorporate in new states and setting up companies to become registered in a state, assisting with employment matters, drafting non-disclosure agreements, assisting with private placement offerings, and researching issues on intellectual property, local regulations, privacy laws, corporate governance, and many other facets of the law, as the need arises. I have previously practiced as an attorney at a small DC securities law firm and worked at Deloitte Financial Advisory Services LLC. My work experience is dynamic and includes many short-term and long term experience that span across areas such as maintaining my own blog, freelance writing, and dog walking. My diverse background has provided me with a stong skill set that can be easily adapted for new areas of work and indicates my ability to quickly learn for a wide array of clients.

Adam B. on ContractsCounsel
View Adam
Member Since:
March 5, 2021

Adam B.

Managing Partner
Free Consultation
San Mateo, California
25 Yrs Experience
Licensed in CA
McGeorge School of Law

Seasoned technology lawyer with 22+ years of experience working with the hottest start-ups through IPO and Fortune 50. My focus is primarily technology transactions with an emphasis on SaaS and Privacy, but I also provide GC services for more active clients.

Ema T. on ContractsCounsel
View Ema
Member Since:
March 12, 2021

Ema T.

Contract and IP Attorney
Free Consultation
New York, NY
5 Yrs Experience
Licensed in NY
Chicago Kent

I am a NY licensed attorney experienced in business contracts, agreements, waivers and more, corporate law, and trademark registration. My office is a sole member Law firm therefore, I Take pride in giving every client my direct attention and focus. I focus on getting the job done fast while maintaining high standards.

David B. on ContractsCounsel
View David
Member Since:
April 1, 2021

David B.

Attorney
Free Consultation
Trussville, Alabama
27 Yrs Experience
Licensed in AL
Birmingham School of Law

A twenty-five year attorney and certified mediator native to the Birmingham, Alabama area.

Samantha B. on ContractsCounsel
View Samantha
Member Since:
April 15, 2021

Samantha B.

Principal and Founder
Free Consultation
Chicago
9 Yrs Experience
Licensed in FL, IL
Ave Maria School of Law

Samantha has focused her career on developing and implementing customized compliance programs for SEC, CFTC, and FINRA regulated organizations. She has worked with over 100 investment advisers, alternative asset managers (private equity funds, hedge funds, real estate funds, venture capital funds, etc.), and broker-dealers, with assets under management ranging from several hundred million to several billion dollars. Samantha has held roles such as Chief Compliance Officer and Interim Chief Compliance Officer for SEC-registered investment advisory firms, “Of Counsel” for law firms, and has worked for various securities compliance consulting firms. Samantha founded Coast to Coast Compliance to make a meaningful impact on clients’ businesses overall, by enhancing or otherwise creating an exceptional and customized compliance program and cultivating a strong culture of compliance. Coast to Coast Compliance provides proactive, comprehensive, and independent compliance solutions, focusing primarily on project-based deliverables and various ongoing compliance pain points for investment advisers, broker-dealers, and other financial services firms.

Find the best lawyer for your project

Browse Lawyers Now

Want to speak to someone?

Get in touch below and we will schedule a time to connect!

Request a call