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Can I modify a marital agreement while I'm married?

Although there was a time when couples shied away from talking about financial issues before getting married, now more and more recognize that a frank discussion can prevent financial instability in case the marriage does not last. A prenuptial agreement, an agreement signed before the couple enters into marriage, is one that changes the regime of separation of property and ancillary matters and is recognized under law in Louisiana.

However, even if the couple does not enter into a prenuptial agreement, they can enter into one while they are married, along the lines of a postnuptial agreement. This is also recognized in Louisiana-they can either enter into an agreement or modify an existing one.

However, a couple must file a joint petition and the court must determine if it is in the best interests of both the parties. Also, the court ensures that the parties understand the governing principles and rules they have acquiesced to. If the agreement is signed within the first year of the marriage, they do not need court approval.

These agreements can cover a number of financial issues, such as property division, distribution of property as separate or combined and responsibility of debts. However, courts do not allow child custody or child support obligations to be established by these agreements and other issues that might be against public policy.

Removing these legal issues from the ambit of one's divorce can be beneficial in the long run. However, it is important to ensure that the agreement entered into is legally enforceable, and an experienced attorney may be able to guide Louisiana residents through the process

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