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One-sided prenup denies hedge fund manager’s ex-wife alimony

For many San Antonio couples, the idea of signing a prenuptial agreement may seem like throwing a wet blanket over their burgeoning romance. Yet for those who bring significant assets into a marriage, such an agreement may be the only way to avoid losing a large portion of those assets should the marriage fail. Conversely, those asked to sign a prenuptial agreement by their wealthier partners may not wish to do so blindly. While the thought of the marriage not lasting may seem remote at the time, they may want to ensure that should it end, their prenuptial agreement provides them with favorable terms.

Such does not appear to be the case with the ex-wife of a wealthy New York hedge fund manager. Against the advice of her own lawyer at the time, she signed an agreement back in 2007 that promised her and her two daughters the right to continue living in their swanky full-service apartment should the marriage end, as well as a $1.6 million investment fund. As part of the agreement, however, he would retain ownership of the unit, and the three of them would have to vacate the apartment once the girls were grown. On top of that, he would not be required to pay her alimony.

Despite the woman’s claims that she was pressured into signing the agreement initially, a panel of judges recently upheld its terms. While potential coercion may be viewed by some courts as reason to invalidate a prenuptial agreement after the fact, a better way to avoid an unfavorable outcome to divorce proceedings may be to not sign a one-sided agreement in the first place. Having the assistance of an attorney during the drafting of a prenup and following his or her advice may keep one from making such a mistake.

Source: New York Daily News “Hedge fund manager wins right to deny wife alimony, kick her out of lavish NYC home” Ross, Barbara, Jan. 28, 2016

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