Does a premarital or prenuptial agreement override normal property division rules?

By Vince Wills and Christina DeVault
March 15, 2018
Does a premarital or prenuptial agreement override normal property division rules?

If there is a valid prenuptial agreement, it will control how property will be divided. If the prenuptial agreement excludes certain property from becoming marital property then property that is excluded will not be marital property. If the prenuptial agreement contains a waiver to a monetary award or other form of equitable distribution such as a transfer of a pension interest, then a court will be prohibited from granting a monetary award or making some other form of equitable distribution such as transferring a pension and interest from one spouse to the other.

If the prenuptial agreement contains a waiver of alimony then a court will be prohibited from awarding alimony from the party who waived it. The only thing that a prenuptial agreement will not control is something to do with children, since parties cannot tie up courts hands when it comes to children.


Vince Wills and Christina DeVault are divorce attorneys from Dragga, Hannon & Wills in Rockville, Maryland. A Fellow of the prestigious American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, Vince has co-authored numerous published articles on family law topics. Super Lawyers has named him as a top attorney for Maryland and the Washington Metropolitan area. Christina’s practice includes representing clients at all stages of family law, helping her clients make important decisions with confidence. To learn more about Vince and Christina, visit DraggaLaw.com.

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March 15, 2018
Categories:  FAQs

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