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Pre-nuptial Agreements, Real Estate, and Mortgage Loan Signatures

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I have a husband and wife that signed a pre-nuptial agreement keeping real estate prior to marriage separate. The husband wants to borrow on his real estate which is in his name only. Does the wife have to sign the mortgage for his loan on his property owned prior to marriage when there is a pre-nuptial in place and can we request a copy of the pre-nuptial?

The answer depends on state law. Most states provide each spouse with "inchoate" rights in property of the other spouse. Thus, even though they have agreed to keep their property separate, they may each have a right to make a claim against the other spouse's estate. Before accepting the terms of the agreement in making your decision, check with a local attorney on how state law operates.

And yes, you can and should ask for a copy of the agreement.

First published on 10/21/02

First published on 10/21/2002

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