2020 Georgia Code
Title 19 - Domestic Relations
Chapter 3 - Marriage Generally
Article 3 - Antenuptial Agreements, Marriage Contracts, and Postnuptial Settlements
§ 19-3-66. (For Effective Date, See note.) Enforcement of Marriage Contracts, Postnuptial Settlements, and Antenuptial Agreements

Universal Citation: GA Code § 19-3-66 (2020)
  1. Marriage contracts and postnuptial settlements shall be enforced at the instance of all persons in whose favor there are limitations of the estate.
  2. Antenuptial agreements may be enforced by a court of equity at the instance of:
    1. The parties to the marriage; or
    2. The offspring of the marriage and their heirs at any time after the death of a spouse, subject to Code Sections 15-9-30, 23-1-4, and 53-7-40; provided, however, that when enforced at the instance of such offspring and their heirs, the court may enforce in favor of other persons.

(Orig. Code 1863, § 1730; Code 1868, § 1771; Code 1873, § 1781; Code 1882, § 1781; Civil Code 1895, § 2486; Civil Code 1910, § 3005; Code 1933, § 53-406; Ga. L. 2018, p. 155, § 1-1/HB 190; Ga. L. 2020, p. 377, § 2-24/HB 865.)

Law reviews.

- For article, "Parentage Prenups and Midnups," see 31 Ga. St. U.L. Rev. 343 (2015).

JUDICIAL DECISIONS

Interested parties to action construing contract.

- When the construction of a doubtful marriage settlement is sought it is proper to make all persons, who may have an interest under any possible construction of the instrument, parties. Carswell v. Schley, 56 Ga. 101 (1876).

Parties within scope of marriage settlements.

- Those having natural claims upon the parties, such as the wife and offspring, and those claiming under or through them, alone come within the scope of the marriage consideration. The fact that collaterals are first mentioned in the limitations of the articles does not bring them within the reach and influence of the agreement. Merritt v. Scott, 6 Ga. 563 (1849).

Prenuptial agreement between decedent husband and wife, wherein the wife agreed not to assert any claim on the husband's estate, constituted a final and complete settlement which the mother and sister of the decedent had standing to enforce. Sieg v. Sieg, 265 Ga. 384, 455 S.E.2d 830 (1995).

Reformation.

- Persons, though provided for in a marriage settlement, if they are not parties to it, nor heirs at law of parties thereto, and are not embraced within the scope of the marriage consideration, cannot have it reformed in a court of chancery. Merritt v. Scott, 6 Ga. 563 (1849); Cook v. Walker, 21 Ga. 370 (1857); Cartledge v. Cutliff, 29 Ga. 758 (1859).

Changes to agreement.

- Final version of the settlement agreement adopted by the trial court over the objections of the defendant included several provisions either not included in the original or different than those initially agreed upon; those changes and additions to the parties agreement rendered the trial court's adoption of the subsequently drafted final version error. DeGarmo v. DeGarmo, 269 Ga. 480, 499 S.E.2d 317 (1998).

Cited in Ferrill v. Perryman, 34 Ga. 576 (1866).

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur. 2d.

- 41 Am. Jur. 2d, Husband and Wife, § 130.

C.J.S.

- 41 C.J.S., Husband and Wife, §§ 111 et seq., 136.

ALR.

- Divorce or judicial separation as affecting marriage settlement, 95 A.L.R. 1469.

Setting aside antenuptial contract or marriage settlement on ground of failure of spouse to make proper disclosure of property owned, 27 A.L.R.2d 883.

Declaratory judgment, during lifetime of spouses, as to construction of antenuptial agreement dealing with property rights of survivor, 80 A.L.R.2d 941.

Noncompliance with statutory requirements concerning form of execution or acknowledgment as affecting validity or enforceability of written antenuptial agreement, 16 A.L.R.3d 370.

Enforcement of antenuptial contract or settlement conditioned upon marriage, where marriage was subsequently declared void, 46 A.L.R.3d 1403.

Separation agreements: enforceability of provision affecting property rights upon death of one party prior to final judgment of divorce, 67 A.L.R.4th 237.

Failure to disclose extent or value of property owned as ground for avoiding premarital contract, 3 A.L.R.5th 394.

Validity of postnuptial agreements in contemplation of divorce, 77 A.L.R.6th 293.

Validity of postnuptial agreements in contemplation of spouse's death, 87 A.L.R.6th 495.

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