In Maryland, and across the United States, we have “freedom of contract.” This means that you and another party (or parties) mostly can customize the terms of your agreements however you want without governmental interference. That freedom extends to prenuptial agreements, but it is not without limits. Certain subject matters cannot be controlled by a prenuptial agreement and clauses purporting to do so are necessarily unenforceable. Working with a knowledgeable Maryland prenuptial agreement lawyer can be invaluable in making the document you sign will accomplish the goals you desire to achieve.
Getting your prenuptial agreement “right” is crucial for multiple reasons. For one thing, courts will (due to freedom of contract) enforce most prenuptial agreement provisions as written. However, on the other hand, including an unenforceable provision may substantially damage your overall agreement.
A recent divorce case originating in Prince George’s County shows what can happen when a prenuptial agreement goes wrong. The agreement contained one paragraph that said that if the wife left, filed for separation, or filed for divorce, the husband would get full custody of the couple’s children and the wife would receive “unlimited visitation rights.” Additionally, the wife promised in the second paragraph to raise the children in the Islamic faith.