Prenuptial Agreements & Postnuptials
Prenuptial agreements, and those made after marriage or civil partnership, have become much more common in recent years, and not just among the wealthy.
Previously thought to be reserved for the rich and famous, prenuptial agreements are now more common than people may think.
Making provision for the future is rarely a bad idea.
Prenuptial agreements, or ‘prenups’, may be considered un-romantic, but if you have assets that you want to ensure are protected in the event of a future divorce or dissolution, then it may be worthwhile preparing one.
By using an experienced family lawyer to help you and your partner draft your prenuptial agreement, you can ensure that all relevant details are covered and that it is correctly drafted.
Additionally, the benefits of a prenup or postnup are considerable when viewed against the typical costs of contested financial proceedings in the Family Court.
Contact Us Today
What does a prenuptial agreement cover?
Every prenuptial agreement is individual to each couple and will be tailored to their particular and unique circumstances.
Here are a few circumstances in which you may wish to consider a prenuptial agreement before entering into marriage with your partner:
- You have children from a previous relationship that you wish to set funds aside for
- You own or run a business and want to ensure your interests in it are protected
- You own property that you wish to keep separate
- You have substantial wealth that you wish to protect
A detailed document providing for the distribution of assets on any subsequent relationship breakdown creates certainty and aims to remove or reduce any acrimony that might otherwise exist when negotiating a financial settlement.
You would only need to refer back to the agreement if things didn’t work out : one of the benefits of a prenuptial agreement is keeping a divorce amicable and as pain-free as possible.
Is a prenuptial agreement legally binding?
Provided that certain safeguards are met, it is likely that the Court will give the agreement very significant weight in the event of any subsequent divorce. Safeguards include but are not limited to:
- Both parties entering into the agreement freely;
- Ensuring that proper provision is made for any children;
- Full and frank disclosure.
Our friendly family lawyers are adept at advising on and drafting prenuptial agreements and postnuptials, too, and are very experienced in highlighting relevant details that may otherwise have been missed.
What's the difference between prenup and postnup?
Both prenups and postnups are designed to protect your finances in the event of a divorce.
Divorce can be costly and having these arrangements could potentially save you thousands.
A prenuptial agreement is signed before marriage, whereas a postnuptial agreement is arranged whilst you are already married.
Both legal documents are intended to protect assets such as a business, property, possessions and fortune in the event of a divorce.
Arrangements for the care for children and other aspects of parenting can also be addressed in either of these agreements, if relevant.
Are postnuptial agreements enforceable?
A postnuptial agreement is a legally binding document – just like a prenup. Should your marriage result in divorce, your assets are more likely to be protected by having a postnup than not having had one.
In order to be valid, postnuptial agreements must, at a minimum, meet the following requirements:
- Written down in a formal document – verbal agreements will not be considered;
- Both parties must have voluntarily signed the agreement;
- The agreement must be fair. An agreement that is entirely one sided and unjust towards an individual, based on circumstances, will not be enforceable.
What can and cannot be included in a prenuptial agreement?
A prenuptial agreement will be tailored around your circumstances.
You can include any shared or individually owned financial assets, like property, money or businesses.
However, you won’t be able to include any private domestic matters.
How am I protected in the event of a divorce?
Your assets aren’t automatically protected in the event of a divorce. Even if you bought your house yourself, everything essentially gets placed in the matrimonial ‘pot’ to be shared.
Having an agreement like a prenup or postnup in place can be expensive initially, but, should the worst happen, it could save you lots of money.
These agreements are now fully recognised in our law and are the best way to try to ring-fence and protect your assets.
Meet the team
members on 0161 969 3131
- Mark Heptinstall Partner & Head of Family
- Phillip Rhodes Partner
- Patricia Robinson Partner
- Kim Aucott Consultant Solicitor
- Claire Higham Solicitor
- David Wilkinson Solicitor
- Eluned Roberts Solicitor
- Rebecca Lang Associate Solicitor
- Rebecca Muirhead Associate Solicitor
- Joanne Taylor Chartered Legal Executive
- Lisa Woodworth Paralegal
- Charlotte Beck Partner
- Rachel Mason Paralegal
- Claire Oxendale Paralegal
- Jodi Tuson Solicitor
- Dorota Beange Consultant Solicitor
- Louise Richardson Consultant Solicitor