May 22, 2019

Should a Four-Day Marriage result in Annulment or Alimony?

Posted By Nadia Pazos
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This is the exact question that a court will have to answer for Nicholas Cage and his wife, make-up artist Erika Koike. On March 23, the pair got married in Las Vegas after applying for a marriage license and getting married the same day. Cage filed for annulment four days into the marriage, which would have the effect of making the marriage invalid and as if it never took place. Koike responded by filing for spousal support, a.k.a. alimony. Thus, showing that she would not back down so easily.

So how could have Nicholas Cage avoided this predicament? A prenuptial agreement is an agreement couples can enter into before they get married to decide what will happen to their individual assets (money, cars, homes, stocks, etc.) should the marriage end. A prenuptial agreement, if done properly, will protect the assets of the parties in the event of a situation like this one. Florida requires a couple things for a pre-nuptial agreement to be valid. The agreement must not be the product of fraud, deceit, misrepresentation, or coercion. Valid prenuptial agreements can allow for the waiver or limitation on the rights to alimony and property rights.

Even absent an agreement that says Koike will not be eligible to receive alimony, it is not likely that a four-day marriage with no children will result in spousal support. The law on divorces varies from state to state. In Florida, when a court is deciding whether to award alimony, it will look at various factors—many of which focus on the length of the marriage and actions of each spouse during the marriage. Some of these factors include the standard of living established during the marriage; the duration of the marriage; the contribution of each party to the marriage, including, but not limited to, services rendered in homemaking, child care, education, and career building of the other party; and the responsibilities each party will have with regard to any minor children they have in common.

Only time will tell what the Judge will decide to do in this peculiar case.

 

Family Law

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