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Postnuptial Agreements: Help for Shaky Marriages

Postnuptial Agreements: Help for Shaky Marriages

In California, postnuptial agreements serve many purposes, including determining major issues before they become the fodder of a hostile divorce and providing a mechanism for reallocating marital assets in the event of changed circumstances. The list of reasons for getting a postnuptial agreement is potentially endless, but the goals in every case are the same — to create a fair, well crafted, legally binding agreement that takes into account known facts and anticipates, to the extent possible, future contingencies. Family law attorneys in Palm Springs can structure a postnuptial agreement that addresses the needs and concerns of both parties to the greatest extent possible.

Using postnuptial agreements for marital crisis management

When a couple is locked in conflict regarding how to deal with their debts, how to make spending decisions, or how much to give to the children of their previous marriages (and, perhaps, cannot even begin talk to one another without shouting), the pressure in the marriage grows and divorce may appear inevitable. Marriage counseling can be helpful, but isn’t ideal in and of itself, because it doesn’t provide legal solution to financial issues. When spouses work together to create a legal agreement, they learn to arrive at a practical solution to their problems, which can remove much of the stress from their relationship.  Mediation is conducive to this goal because it provides a framework for discussion that allows the spouses to air their grievances while moving toward a specific solution.

Mediation gives couples in conflict a framework in which to reach agreement  

Mediation is a powerful tool that allows people to achieve a satisfying, permanent resolution to their conflicts though a voluntary, cooperative, open and shared process of issue resolution. Mediation works best with parties who are motivated to mediate, are willing to take responsibility for their actions and decisions and are committed to seeking resolution of their issues.

What to expect at mediation

At mediation, the parties present their positions to a third party (mediator) whose job it is to ensure the integrity of the process by creating a neutral zone wherein the parties can communicate effectively. The mediator will encourage the free-flowing, objective exchange of ideas and discourage personal attacks, interruptions and unproductive arguments. The focus of the discussion is aimed at uncovering the issues, interests and needs of the parties for the purpose of finding alternative solutions and workable options.

How you can get the best results from mediation

To obtain optimal results during mediation:

  • Have a clear understanding of the issues you would like to resolve as well as your needs and goals, but be prepared to be flexible in their implementation.
  • Come equipped to exchange financial information about assets and debts where they are relevant to the issues that are to be resolved in the agreement, because transparency is crucial to the integrity of the agreement.
  • Be aware that under California law you have a fiduciary duty of loyalty to your spouse, and therefore your agreement must show that you have acted in their best interests. If that attitude permeates the mediation process, it will become apparent that your best interests are served as well.

Riverside County family law lawyers provide you with expert assistance in preparing for and participating in the process.

The lawyers at Schlecht, Shevlin & Shoenberger, A Law Corporation represent parties in the mediation process and also serve as mediators. Our attorneys provide services on a voluntary basis to the Riverside County California State Court. Our many years of experience in family law litigation further enables us to give you the best support possible in achieving a favorable result.



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