Statute of Limitation on Pre-Nuptial Agreements Tolled Until Divorce Action Commenced

Governor Spitzer signed into law, this week, a bill amending Domestic Relations Law  §250, tolling the three year statute of limitations for commencing an action or asserting a defense that arises from a pre-nuptial or post nuptial agreement until service of process has been completed in a divorce action or until one of the parties dies. The law does not apply to separation agreements or agreements entered into during the matrimonial action.

What this means in plain English is that a party does not have to take any action to enforce or to declare void a marital agreement until an action for divorce or annulment is commenced.

This amendment makes sense. It would be impractical to require a party, during an intact marriage, to contest or change the terms of prenuptial agreement. Under the amended law, any dispute over the marital agreement would need to be asserted within three years of the commencement of a matrimonial action.

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