Family Law Blog

Do Digital Assets Fit Into a Prenuptial Agreement?

Thursday, July 13, 2017

In these modern, constantly connected times, the way we interact with each other has changed. Relationships are celebrated through technology and sometimes started because of it. Sharing a Netflix password may be a show of trust and having something like a joint iTunes account could be a display of how serious a relationship has gotten. However, not all relationships last, so can a prenuptial agreement that safeguards your other assets also safeguard your digital ones as well?

It may sound silly, but including digital assets into a prenup or postnup is becoming more important as technology continues to grow. Digital assets that you can and should include in your prenuptial agreement include photography, audiovisual media, word documents, and e-mail. By putting in clauses on who can keep this digital media, it can help you retain ownership as well as a certain degree of digital security if a marriage dissolves. This is especially important if couples often share devices so no matter who retains ownership of it, they are not completely privileged to keep everything on the device. Imagine if you lost your next great American novel just because it was on your spouse's computer? It would be tragic.

Another important factor to consider is digital assets purchased for a specific platform. iTunes is a good example of this since you can't transfer media bought on that account to another. If you use platforms like this, it will save a lot of potential pain later by stating who gets ownership of it. Sometimes this might be a clause of one person getting ownership and the other getting compensation for the media contributed to it.

If you are drafting up a prenuptial agreement and aren't sure how your digital assets fit into it, contact us today.

The Rise and Rise of Postnuptial Agreements

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Many San Jose family lawyers find that there is little need to convince people about the need to sign a prenuptial agreement. However, an increasing trend that is especially suited for people who fail to sign a prenuptial agreement is the postnuptial contract. Statistics seem to indicate there has been an increase in the number of people asking for postnuptial agreements after the marriage.

Postnuptial agreements are very similar to prenuptial agreements, with the only difference that these are signed after the marriage has taken place. Postnuptial agreements are agreements between married couples, and currently all 50 states allow postnuptial agreements to be signed.

So, what can be covered in the postnuptial agreement? You can cover everything that is included in a prenuptial agreement, including how to divide assets in the event of a divorce, alimony, spousal payments, and other matters. In fact, an increasing number of people are now using postnuptial agreements to dictate terms about lifestyle choices that their spouses can make during the marriage. For instance, it's not uncommon to find prenups that clearly state that the spouse must not put on more than a specified number of pounds during the marriage. Not surprisingly, many postnuptial agreements also now have similar lifestyle clauses.

The need for postnuptial agreements is likely to be especially high in the case of same-sex married couples, who married before the Supreme Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act. For these people who bought property and invested in assets before the striking down of the law, a postnuptial agreement now presents a strong way to protect those assets in the case of the dissolution of the marriage. Postnuptial agreements are also ideal in those cases where one partner has received a major inheritance, or an expensive gift like a piece of property after the marriage, and want to protect this property.