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Will Your Pre Marital Or Prenuptial Agreement Be Enforced

Under the Uniform Premarital Agreement Act, N.J.S.A. 37:2-31 et seq., a premarital or pre-civil union agreement must be in writing, with a statement of assets annexed thereto, signed by both parties, and it is enforceable without consideration. See N.J.S.A. 37:2-33. Likewise, any amendment to or revocation of the premarital agreement must be in writing and signed by both parties. See N.J.S.A. 37:2-37.

With respect to premarital agreements, New Jersey courts have held that a spouse’s promise to marry may constitute the only consideration for the antenuptial promise being enforced. See Marschall v. Marschall, 195 N.J. Super. 16 (Ch. Div. 1984). This is so because the premarital agreement is reached when the parties are not adversaries, “when the relationship is at its closest, when the parties are least likely to be cautious in dealing with each other.” Id.

As such, if the premarital agreement is in writing, attaches a statement of the parties’ assets, and is signed by both parties. Although it is a contract, no specific consideration (bargained for exchange) is required for the enforcement of a valid, written and signed premarital agreement other than the parties’ promise to marry itself.