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Washington Postnuptial Agreement Law

Marriage – Postnuptial Agreements – Washington

Title 26, Chapter 26.16, RCW 26.16.120 Agreements as to status.


Nothing contained in any of the provisions of this chapter[fn*] or in any law of this state, shall prevent the husband and wife from jointly entering into any agreement concerning the status or disposition of the whole or any portion of the community property, then owned by them or afterwards to be acquired, to take effect upon the death of either. But such agreement may be made at any time by the husband and wife by the execution of an instrument in writing under their hands and seals, and to be witnessed, acknowledged and certified in the same manner as deeds to real estate are required to be, under the laws of the state, and the same may at any time thereafter be altered or amended in the same manner. Such agreement shall not derogate from the right of creditors; nor be construed to curtail the powers of the superior court to set aside or cancel such agreement for fraud or under some other recognized head of equity jurisdiction, at the suit of either party; nor prevent the application of laws governing the community property and inheritance rights of slayers under chapter 11.84 RCW.

RCW 26.16.150 Rights of married persons in general.


Every married person shall hereafter have the same right and liberty to acquire, hold, enjoy and dispose of every species of property, and to sue and be sued, as if he or she were unmarried.

RCW 26.16.160 Civil disabilities of wife abolished.


All laws which impose or recognize civil disabilities upon a wife, which are not imposed or recognized as existing as to the husband, are hereby abolished, and for any unjust usurpation of her natural or property rights, she shall have the same right to appeal in her own individual name, to the courts of law or equity for redress and protection that the husband has: PROVIDED, ALWAYS, That nothing in this chapter[fn*] shall be construed to confer upon the wife any right to vote or hold office, except as otherwise provided by law.

RCW 26.16.210 Burden of proof in transactions between husband and wife.


In every case, where any question arises as to the good faith of any transaction between spouses or between domestic partners, whether a transaction between them directly or by intervention of third person or persons, the burden of proof shall be upon the party asserting the good faith.

RCW 26.16.250 Quasi-community property — Characterization limited to determination of disposition at death — Waiver by written agreement.


The characterization of property as quasi-community property under this chapter shall be effective solely for the purpose of determining the disposition of such property at the time of a death, and such characterization shall not affect the rights of the decedent’s creditors. For all other purposes property characterized as quasi-community property under this chapter shall be characterized without regard to the provisions of this chapter. A husband and wife may waive, modify, or relinquish any quasi-community property right granted or created by this chapter by signed written agreement, wherever executed, before or after June 11, 1986, including without limitation, community property agreements, prenuptial and postnuptial agreements, or agreements as to status of property.

Disclaimer: This law summary is not legal advice. If you are not an attorney, you should consult an attorney about serious legal matters.

Inside Washington Postnuptial Agreement Law