Button v. Button
Wisconsin Supreme Court
388 N.W.2d 546 (1986)
Ms. Button (plaintiff) and Mr. Button (defendant) were married in September 1969, when she was 50 years old and he was 61. Mrs. Button brought to the marriage approximately $3,000 in personal property and a life insurance policy in her ex-husband’s name worth $12,000, while Mr. Button had an upholstery business, a stock portfolio, and real estate. The couple signed a prenuptial agreement in August 1969, written by Mr. Button’s attorney. Although there were no financial disclosures to Ms. Button at that time, she was generally aware of Mr. Button’s assets. When her ex-husband died, Ms. Button gave the life insurance proceeds to her daughter. Mr. Button sold his business in June 1974, and the parties then signed a postnuptial agreement written by Mr. Button’s attorney that superseded the 1969 agreement. At that time, Mr. Button’s assets were approximately $110,000, and Ms. Button’s assets were relatively unchanged. Ms. Button again did not receive financial disclosures, but was generally aware of Mr. Button’s property. The 1974 agreement provided that, upon divorce, each party would receive the property he or she acquired before or separately during the marriage, plus half of all property acquired jointly during the marriage. Ms. Button filed for divorce in 1983. The trial court found that Ms. Button was aware of the meaning of the postnuptial agreement and was bound by its terms, especially because she felt free to give away the life insurance proceeds to her daughter. The trial court awarded Ms. Button assets valued at $7,882.10 and Mr. Button assets valued at $255,103.99. Ms. Button appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Abrahamson, J.)
What to do next…
Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.
You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 97,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read our student testimonials.
Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.
Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students. Read more about Quimbee.
Here's why 178,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:
- Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 14,000 briefs, keyed to 188 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
- The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
- Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
- Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.