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What If Your Prenuptial Agreement Has The Opposite Of Its Intended Effect?


The best prenuptial agreements reflect a clear understanding of the couple’s finances and values; sometimes they can prevent divorce, and even when they can’t, both spouses emerge from the marriage with what they agree is a fair share of property.  Prenuptial agreements are not a perfect guarantee of a painless divorce, however.  When a couple gets divorced after signing a prenup, the court will enforce the agreement unless one spouse can convincingly argue that the agreement is not valid on technical grounds, that it was signed under duress or as a result of fraud, or that it is unconscionable.  The courts of Florida have ruled to set aside prenuptial agreements in a case where the husband presented to the prenup the day before the wedding and in a language the wife did not understand and in a case where the husband threatened not to sponsor the wife’s immigration petition unless she signed the agreement.  A prenup is still valid, however, if you promised your spouse the moon of stars when you were sure nothing could go wrong with your marriage, but now that it is time to pay up, it hurts more than you expected to be separated from your riches.  If a prenup that threatens to leave you penniless is casting a shadow over your divorce, contact a Boca Raton prenuptial and postnuptial agreement lawyer.

60 Million Reasons to Lie, and One Reason to Tell the Truth

Abe Haruvi and Giovana Stephenson married in 2008.  Haruvi owns apartment buildings on Manhattan’s Upper East Side and Upper West Side and has a net worth of upwards of $100 million.  The couple bought a waterfront mansion in Palm Beach in 2011, and by the time they separated in 2022, it was worth nearly $50 million.  Before they married, they signed a prenuptial agreement.  It stated that, if Haruvi struck Stephenson or committed adultery, Stephenson would be entitled to the marital home (now construed to mean the Palm Beach mansion), plus $8 million in alimony in the event of a divorce, but if they divorced after a marriage that involved no adultery or domestic violence on Haruvi’s part, Stephenson would not receive any alimony and would forfeit her right to the marital home.  The prenup defined “domestic violence” as any domestic violence offense classified as a felony or first-degree misdemeanor.

In 2021, Haruvi was charged with domestic battery, but he pleaded not guilty, and the criminal court acquitted him.  He later stated that Stephenson has “60 million reasons to lie” about Haruvi physically abusing her.  From a legal perspective, though, there is a simpler solution.  Stephenson could simply argue that enforcing the prenup would leave her destitute, and therefore the court should not enforce it.

Contact Schwartz | White About Marrying a Megamillionaire

A South Florida family law attorney can help you draft a prenuptial agreement where one spouse is much wealthier than the other.  Contact Schwartz | White in Boca Raton, Florida about your case.




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