Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Post-nuptial agreements - new appellate court case

The Indiana Court of Appeals handed down a new opinion on post-nuptial agreements. Remember, post-nuptial agreements are agreements entered into after marriage (and prenuptial agreements are made before marriage).

The new case turns on the issue of modification. The parties agreed on the souring of the marriage, they created an agreement that included a provision about insurance and the beneficiary of that insurance, and then the husband filed for divorce in Indiana. During the divorce, husband requested that the court change the insurance beneficiary from his wife (as in the Agreement) to their adult children. The trial court made this change. The trial judge makes the wrong decision.

The trial court gets reversed because the husband failed to show "'fraud, duress, and other imperfections of consent, . . . or with manifest inequities, particularly those deriving from great disparities in bargaining power....'"

The Court of Appeals provides selections from the Agreement in the opinion and it may be worth checking out for that purpose, too.

The case, and a link to it, is Marie B. Augle n/k/a Marie B. DeLuca v. William H. Augle.

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