Is my fathers pre=nuptual agreement still enforceable if they adopted his wife’s grandchild?

They have been married for 12 years and they adopted the child 9 years ago. He is elderly and not being taken care of well by his wife or the “son” (mental abuse of the elderly). We are wondering if the prenuptial agreement she signed when they got married is still enforceable now. The house was his before marriage.

Asked on July 7, 2012 under Family Law, Ohio


B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Ohio does recognize and enforce prenuptial agreements if they were entered into with "full disclosure" (everyone knew what was going on), without fraud-duress-or coercion (i.e. no threats involved, no lies involved), and the terms don't encourage profiteering divorce (meaning the agreement still has to be a fair division).  The fact that your father adopted a child will not, by iteself, affect the enforceability of the agreement.  Instead, how the agreement was entered will control.  If you can prove any violations, then you could have the agreement declared void and unenforceable.  But... this really isn't an issue until they get ready to divorce-- which doesn't seem to be your issue right now.

The issue is your father being neglected or abused.  You can take actions to help your father regardless of (and despite) the prenuptial agreement.  Make a call the Ohio Adult Protective Services.  You can also petition the court to be named guardian or power of attorney over your dad's estate, including the house that he purchased before they were married.

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