The wife of a billionaire hedge fund manager is countering her husband’s divorce by trying to declare their prenuptial agreement invalid. The divorce began in the summer of 2013 after the couple had been married for 11 years. The agreement would prevent the wife from gaining much from the divorce; sources say that she would be entitled to only $50 million, which is about 1 percent of the husband’s net worth.
According to the wife, she signed the prenuptial agreement under duress. She stated that the husband presented the agreement shortly before the wedding and caught her off guard. In addition, she claims that the two of them saw a psychologist to help them resolve pre-marital issues, and the psychologist recommended she sign the agreement. She found out later that the husband had already been seeing the psychologist. She wrote in the filing that she was essentially tricked into believing she was seeing a neutral professional, when it fact she was being pushed into signing the agreement.
A prenuptial agreement can be an important protective document in a divorce. The agreement can be used to set out the expectations of each spouse when it comes to claiming assets in a possible divorce. Normally, such agreements help to make the divorce process more clear.
The agreement is not an infallible document, however. A very complex marriage can go beyond what is outlined in a prenuptial document, causing the agreement to be less useful or deemed invalid by the courts. For example, if a spouse can provide proof that he or she was coerced or tricked into signing the agreement, then it could be voided. An attorney who is familiar with the agreements and divorce proceedings could help clients while drafting the document and upholding its legitimacy in court.
Source: CNBC, “Anne Griffin Seeks to Void Prenuptial Agreement With Ken Griffin”, Michael J. de la Merved, September 03, 2014