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Posted on October 19, 2018 in Prenuptial Agreement

This TMZ story reports that celebrities Chris Pratt and Anna Faris have signed divorce documents. (Source: https://www.tmz.com)

There are two aspects to this celebrity divorce article that might not stick out to a casual reader, but that deserves a little more attention and discussion.

First, Chris Pratt and Anna Faris had a prenuptial agreement. Prenuptial agreements (or “prenups”) are not themselves foreign concepts to most people, and prenups are common in Hollywood. There are many reasons to obtain a prenuptial agreement, and they are not inherently cynical, unfair, or nefarious. To the contrary, they are often an important tool to lay the ground rules for treating separate property acquired before marriage and how to handle income and assets acquired during a marriage – in this sense, they can eliminate uncertainty, confusion, and arguments.

However, although the article implies that a prenup means a simple, straightforward property division, this may not always be the case. A simplified property division pursuant to a prenup requires that the prenup be clearly and effectively written by an experienced Family Law attorney. If the prenup has conflicting or vague terms or does not comply with California law, then interpreting and applying the prenup at the time of divorce can lead to disputes and litigation. One purpose of a prenup is to simplify divorce, so getting a prenup done correctly and effectively is critical.

The second interesting aspect of this case is that the parties opted for private judging in their divorce case. Private judging does not mean that the proceedings stay private but means that the judge is a privately compensated judge that is not a current State judicial officer. Private judging allows the parties to select a privately compensated judge that will decide some or all of the issues in their case. Private judging offers flexibility and customizability in the court process that is not always available in the public court system. Private judging results in binding decisions, which differs from private mediation, where the mediator has no authority to make binding “orders.”

If you have questions about prenups, private judging, or your San Diego Family Law case in general, contact the Law Offices of Scott Family Law by calling (858) 974-4900. Scott Family Law is a Certified Family Law Specialist with more than 35 years of experience.