Pre Nuptial and Post Nuptial Agreements

A pre-nuptial agreement is a formal agreement entered into prior to a marriage or civil partnership and a post-nuptial agreement is a formal agreement entered after the marriage.

Pre Nuptial and Post Nuptial Agreements set out who owns what at the time of marriage and also how the couple anticipate those assets should be divided in the event of divorce or separation.

Neither form of agreement is legally binding in England and Wales. However, following the recent landmark Supreme Court case of Radmacher v Granatino, the Court will now attach considerable weight to these agreements and hold parties to the terms agreed unless it can be proved that:

  • the agreement was not entered into freely by each party
  • the parties did not have a full appreciation of the implications of the agreement at the time of signing it
  • it would be unfair to hold either party to the agreement

In order to ensure that your agreement is upheld by the Court then it is important that the following steps are taken before entering into the agreement:

  • Each of you obtain independent legal advice
  • You are full and frank about the assets and income you both have so that you are both fully aware of the implications of the agreement and you have full information to assist you in making your decision.
  • You each enter into the agreement without undue pressure (of your own free will). It is suggested that you sign the agreement 21 days prior to the marriage and after the marriage when the emotions are not running so high.
  • The agreement must be fair and realistic.
  • The agreement must consider future changes for example the birth of any children.

To arrange a discussion at your convenience with a family law solicitor please do not hesitate to contact us.

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