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North Carolina Postnuptial Agreement Cost

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How much does a North Carolina postnuptial agreement cost? This is a common question that married couples living in North Carolina often ask. Let’s explore this question and review some general information about postnuptial agreements and how they can protect a couple’s assets.

How Much Does a Postnuptial Agreement Cost in North Carolina?

Postnuptial agreements, officially called post marital agreements in North Carolina, are legally binding contracts entered into by couples after they have been married. Similar to a prenuptial agreement which is signed prior to marriage, a postnuptial agreement creates a plan for how assets and debts will be divided if the couple decides to divorce.

It is strongly encouraged that spouses hire an experienced attorney to draft their postnuptial agreement. Marital agreements are legally binding contracts that must include specific information and abide by all state laws to be legally enforceable. A lawyer will know how to draft a prenup that is legally enforceable.

Many couples want to know how much a postnuptial agreement will cost. Based on ContractsCounsel's marketplace data, the average cost of a postnuptial agreement in North Carolina is $807.07.

Why Do I Need a Postnuptial Agreement in North Carolina?

North Carolina is one of many states that follows equitable distribution laws in divorce court. This means that without a valid marital agreement stating otherwise, all marital property will be divided by the court in a way that the court deems fair and equitable.

Unlike the 50/50 rule of community property where all assets and debts are split equally between spouses, equitable distribution does not have to be equal. Instead, when dividing property courts will consider several factors like:

  • The length of marriage
  • Contributions of each spouse
  • Education level and earning potential
  • Whether either spouse gave up a career to maintain a home
  • Whether either spouse helped further a career or education
  • Current standard of living

If a party has significant assets, owns a business, or has children from a previous relationship, a postnuptial agreement is a great financial planning tool. This agreement will ensure that all assets are protected and that children are provided for in the event of a divorce.

What's Typically Included in a North Carolina Postnuptial Agreement

The details of postnuptial agreements will vary based on the couple’s financial situation and needs. It is common to find the following provisions in a North Carolina postnuptial agreement:

  • Financial disclosures. A postnuptial agreement must include full financial disclosures from both spouses. Assets can include real estate, savings accounts, investments, and personal property. Failure to make an honest disclosure could result in the contract being ruled unenforceable.
  • Asset distribution. How marital assets will be divided in a divorce.
  • Debt allocation. How debts and liabilities will be split in a divorce. This is important if one party incurred substantial debt during the marriage like student loans.
  • Spousal support. In a postnuptial agreement, spouses can stipulate to waive alimony, or they can lay out which spouse will be entitled to support including the amount and duration of payments.
  • Inheritance and gifts. These assets are generally considered separate property and belong solely to the spouse to whom they were granted. However, including provisions in a post marital agreement can further protect these assets.

Typically, provisions in marital agreements regarding child support and child custody will not be enforced. Many courts prefer to make decisions about children based on each spouse’s situation at the time of the divorce. While some terms may be honored, a marital agreement cannot waive child support or deprive a parent of parenting time with their child.

Is a Postnuptial Agreement Enforceable in North Carolina?

Yes. Typically, postnuptial agreements will be enforced if they meet certain legal requirements set by state laws. Some of these requirements include:

  1. In writing. Under the statute of frauds, all marital agreements must be made in writing. Oral contracts will not be enforced.
  2. Signatures. Postnuptial agreements must be signed by both parties. Some states require witnesses or notarization of the signatures.
  3. Voluntarily. Marital agreements must be entered into voluntarily free from coercion or duress. This means the spouses should have ample time to read the agreement and consult with an attorney before signing.
  4. Cannot be unconscionable. If a postnuptial agreement is unconscionable, it will not be enforceable. Unconscionable contracts are egregiously unfair or fraudulent. If one spouse fails to disclose all assets, the contract could be ruled unconscionable.
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North Carolina Postnuptial Agreement Projects

Postnuptial Agreement Drafting in North Carolina

It is always recommended that a couple hires a knowledgeable attorney to draft a postnuptial agreement. A lawyer familiar with North Carolina law will know how to draft an agreement that will be legally enforceable in the event of a divorce.

Before drafting a marital agreement, the lawyer will have a consultation with the spouses to learn about their financial situation and goals.

Postnuptial Agreement Review in North Carolina

Many lawyers recommend that each party should hire their own lawyer when executing a marital agreement. Even if the couple agrees on the terms, having two separate lawyers can avoid enforcement issues in court.

In this scenario, one lawyer will draft the contract and the other lawyer will review it. This allows each lawyer to ensure that their client is informed about the terms and conditions of the contract, and they understand what they are signing.

North Carolina Postnuptial Agreement Drafting Cost

If a couple hires an attorney to draft their postnuptial agreement, they will incur legal fees. Drafting contracts requires the time and legal skill of a licensed lawyer.

According to ContractsCounsel's marketplace data, the average postnuptial agreement drafting costs in North Carolina are $1,200.00.

North Carolina Postnuptial Agreement Review Cost

Hiring an attorney to review a postnuptial agreement will also come with legal fees. The lawyer will take their time going over the contract and ensuring their client understands all the terms and conditions included in the agreement.

ContractsCounsel's marketplace data shows the average postnuptial agreement review costs in North Carolina are $414.14.

How Do North Carolina Lawyers Charge for a Postnuptial Agreement?

Hourly Rates for Postnuptial Agreements

Most attorneys use an hourly rate fee agreement to charge their clients. Hourly rate means that the lawyer will bill a client a set hourly rate for each hour spent working on the case or project.

The marketplace data for ContractsCounsel shows the average hourly rate for a family law attorney in North Carolina ranges from $200 - $300 per hour.

Flat Fee Rates for Postnuptial Agreements

When a lawyer is hired for a specific project like drafting a contract, they may opt to charge a client a flat fee rate instead of keeping track of hours. In a flat fee payment structure, attorneys will provide the client with a flat fee price for the entirety of the legal project.

ContractsCounsel's marketplace data shows the average flat fee rate for a postnuptial agreement in North Carolina is $807.07.

Get Help with a North Carolina Postnuptial Agreement

Do you need help with a postnuptial agreement project? If so, post a project in ContractsCounsel's marketplace to receive flat fee bids from family lawyers who are licensed to practice law in North Carolina and can handle your project. All lawyers on the ContractsCounsel's platform are vetted by our team to make sure you are provided with top-tier service.

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