New York Law Regarding Marital Settlement Agreements
Under New York law, a marital separation agreement must be signed and acknowledged in the same manner as a deed. This means that specific acknowledgement language must be used. In the absence of that language, the agreement will not be enforce by a court. Therefore, it is essential that you turn to an experienced New York family law attorney to guide you in drafting and negotiating a marital settlement or separation agreement. If a divorce settlement is drafted appropriately, New York law imposes a very high burden on someone who later try to challenge its validity.
Validity of Property Settlement Agreements Under New Jersey Law
Under New Jersey law, a marital settlement agreement is enforceable, provided that the court determines that it is "fair and just". The legal standard regarding the enforceability of a property settlement agreement has been described by New Jersey courts as follows:
Settlement agreements in matrimonial matters, being 'essentially consensual and voluntary in character, ... [are] entitled to considerable weight with respect to their validity and enforceability' in equity, provided they are fair and just.
Dolce v. Dolce, 383 N.J.Super. 11, 20 (App.Div.2006) (quoting Petersen v. Petersen, 85 N.J. 638, 642 (1981)). Prior to the execution of a marital settlement agreement, the parties should exchange full disclosure of all financial information.