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Brooklyn powerhouse legal firm featured in Forbes on ‘Prenups’

April 5, 2018 Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Frank Carone and RoseAnn Branda. Photo courtesy of Abrams Fensterman
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One of New York’s most experiences lawyers for family and divorce matters is an executive partner at Abrams Fensterman’s Brooklyn headquarters. In a recent interview for Forbes Magazine, she clarified some key points about something called “Prenups.”

“The reasons for creating prenuptial agreements are very clear,” says RoseAnn Branda, speaking at her MetroTech office of Abrams Fensterman. “They’re used to protect the family wealth including ensuring that the assets stay in the line of the biological family that presently owns them. They’re used to protect the interests of children from a prior marriage or affair and to avoid a contested divorce that might incur large legal fees and adverse publicity. Prenuptial agreements can be very worthwhile provided they’re done right.”

It is important to realize that the courts will not likely enforce prenuptial agreements in certain cases. In the Forbes article by Russ Alan Prince, entitled “How to Bust Prenuptial Agreements,” Branda clarifies what makes a prenup weak enough to be challenged.

  • It is not a formal legal document. Only well-drafted agreements can override states that have community property laws or equitable distribution requirements.

  • It is a “shotgun” agreement. If there is any form of coercing a person to sign the agreement, it can turn out to be unenforceable.

  • One person failed to read the agreement. When there is proof that one or both of the spouses did not read the prenup, it might not be enforceable.

  • One party is hiding or just not sharing knowledge of all assets and liabilities. Full transparency between the prospective partners is mandatory.

  • It includes invalid provisions. These are terms that are illegal or against public policy. For example, the courts will not enforce prenups if they stray into areas such as waiving child support.

  • Each partner does not have separate legal counsel. Both parties should – and in some states, it is a requirement – have their own legal counsel so that their separate interests are promoted.

  • The agreement is unconscionable. If the prenup is so completely unfair that it puts one partner in a horrible financial situation and sets up things so the other partner is solidly financially positioned, the courts will very likely not enforce it. Unconscionable agreements are “extreme.”

According to Frank Carone, executive partner at Abrams Fensterman and a personal adviser to the super-rich, “It’s not all that uncommon for mistakes to be made when putting a prenup in place. On behalf of our clients we look for these situations resulting in them getting the advantage. At the same time, high-quality legal work is based in expertise and precision, which is why we diligently do everything possible   to make sure our clients’ prenups do not get ‘busted.’”

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