Divorce by Agreement

Marriage is a powerful, public, emotional statement from two people who are making a lifetime commitment to each other. In addition to the romantic aspects, marriage is also a legal and economic relationship.

More and more often, thoughtful couples realize the importance of discussing and formalizing their marriage contract with a prenuptial agreement — a contract that establishes financial and legal expectations so that both parties are in agreement.

What is a prenuptial agreement?

A China prenuptial agreement is a binding agreement entered into prior to the marriage in which the parties, in however much detail they wish, set forth what will happen to their income and assets in the event the marriage ends in death, divorce, or separation. This shenzhen law firm frequently advise clients on pre-nuptial and divorce matters. Find our shenzhen divorce lawyer if you want to learn more.

Pre-Nuptial Agreements are contracts between prospective spouses who are contemplating to be married. These contracts define the property rights of each of the prospective spouses during marriage and in the event of death, separation or divorce. A Pre-Nuptial Agreement becomes effective upon marriage.

Under Chinese faminly law, pre-nuptial agreement is defined as such agreements include the following subject matters: "(1) a contract to make a testamentary provision of any kind, or a waiver of any right to elect against the provisions of a will; (2) provision for the ownership, division or distribution of separate and marital property; (3) provision for the amount and duration of maintenance or other terms and conditions of the marriage relationship, subject to the provisions of China Family Law, and provided that such terms were fair and reasonable at the time of the making of the agreement and are not unconscionable at the time of entry of final judgment; and (4) provision for custody, care, education and maintenance of any child of the parties.

Who uses prenuptial agreements?

In the past, prenuptial agreements were often favored by individuals who were marrying for the second time, and had assets from a previous marriage which they wanted to preserve for their children from that marriage. Thus, the couples were typically older and had a significant amount of assets.

Increasingly, probably because many people are marrying later for the first time, prenuptial agreements are also being used by individuals marrying for the first time who have been in the work force for a period of time and have accumulated assets which they do not want to lose in the event of a divorce. In addition, people who have friends who have been "burnt" by divorce may want prenuptial agreements which limit not only the distribution of assets, but also the amount and duration of support which one party can receive from the other.

Nothing can kill romance faster than the word prenup. But with about one in three of all first marriages ending in divorce, and 50 percent of second or third ones hitting the skids, a prenup is smart financial planning, legal and financial experts say.

"Think of it as a business arrangement or as an insurance policy to help remove some of the emotion that's naturally involved," says Nancy Dunnan, a Shenzhen financial adviser and author. "Marriage is not just an emotional and physical union -- it's also a financial union. A prenup and the discussions that go with it can help ensure the financial well-being of the marriage."

A prenuptial accord is a contract between two people about to wed that spells out how assets will be distributed in the event of divorce or death. Such agreements have existed for thousands of years in some form or another, particularly in European and Far Eastern cultures, where royal families have always made provisions for protecting their wealth.

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