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Proposed law to make prenuptial agreements uniform


Prenuptial agreements can be beneficial to many Illinois residents who plan on getting married. Many couples who are about to get married recognize the importance of having a legal prenuptial agreement that can help the couple to determine various issues regarding the financial aspects of a potential divorce later on. While most states, including Illinois, do recognize the validity of a legal prenuptial agreement, a uniform law governing prenuptial agreements may be beneficial to everyone involved because it will enforce the prenuptial agreement in every state in the country.

The Uniform Premarital Agreement Act was first proposed in 1983 in order to have a consistent status and requirements for prenuptial agreements all over the United States. However, the act was successful with various states adopting part of the act; the law was not adopted in its entirety.

That is an issue because, under the current law, each state has its own set of rules and guidelines related to how it recognizes and enforces prenuptial agreements. The issue is compounded in some cases where the state in which the prenuptial agreement is meant to be enforced does not have categoric or specific laws regarding that particular type of agreement with precedents or codified laws backing it up.

The act treats prenuptial agreements like any other contract dealing with various aspects of the marriage. The rules of contract regarding free consent, where both parties understand what they are getting into regarding the financial aspects of the divorce, along with the intention to create a valid and legal contract, which can be enforced on a later date, has to be followed by both parties.

Source: Uniform Law Commission, "Premarital and Marital Agreements Act summary," Accessed on July 28, 2015

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