Prenuptial Agreements

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At VM Family Law, our expert family lawyers can advise you on prenuptial agreements and provide legal advice. We are experienced in drafting a range of prenuptial agreements.

Prenuptial agreements offer financial protection in the event of a breakdown in the relationship. They can offer security for children born to unmarried parents who later marry.

Speak to one of our family law experts who would be happy to discuss prenuptial agreements and whether this should be considered in your relationship before marriage.

What is a prenuptial agreement?

A prenuptial agreement is essentially a contract between two individuals, aiming to divide assets in a predetermined manner in the event of a separation, divorce or even death.  

The prenuptial agreement clearly states what each individual will receive if the marriage comes to an end. The agreement would be signed by both individuals prior to the marriage. 

Prenups are designed to benefit any couple that is joining a marriage together and would like to agree on a formal settlement if their marriage comes to an end.

How effective are prenuptial agreements?

The terms of a prenuptial agreement are effective unless the agreement’s outcome is deemed unfair.  For the court to consider your prenuptial agreement as fair, both you and your future partner will need to give full financial disclosure and take legal advice regarding the agreement and its effects. 

VM Family Law can help draft the terms of the agreement or assist with negotiations as per your instructions. If you are still determining if you need a prenuptial agreement, we would be happy to help.

Are prenuptial agreements legally binding in the UK?

In England and Wales, prenuptial agreements are not legally binding as of yet in the event of a divorce or dissolution. However, Prenuptial agreements are regarded by courts as persuasive. The agreement outlines the individual’s intentions following a marriage/civil partnership breakdown.

Many people entering a marriage or civil partnership wish to have an agreement to protect their financial position if the marriage breaks down.

Types of prenuptial agreements

There are two types of nuptial agreements; a prenuptial agreement, sometimes referred to as a prenup or premarital agreement, and postnuptial agreements made after marriage.

Speak to an approachable, friendly team member at VM Family Law for help or advice on prenuptial and postnuptial agreements.

How do prenuptial agreements work?

A prenuptial agreement intends to provide clarity and security in the event of the marriage breaking down to save time, uncertainty and upheaval about the finances at a later date.

Prenuptial agreements can be a complex topic of conversation to have with your partner, especially in the early stages of your relationship. The agreement is a written contract made by a couple before entering a marriage; this lists all individually and jointly owned assets.

Prenuptial agreements aren’t suitable for everyone, and we can advise on the requirements needed for a prenuptial agreement. 

How long do prenuptial agreements last?

A prenuptial agreement is a contract between you and your partner and will last the lifetime of your marriage or civil partnership. However, when joining this contract, a couple may agree that it is only in force for a certain period and this can be whatever period the couple decides. 

If you wish to terminate your prenuptial agreement, we can assist with any questions or concerns you may have.

How much do prenuptial agreements cost?

Prenuptial agreements can cost anything from £1,500 plus VAT upwards, depending on the complexity of the agreement and whether its terms have already been agreed or need to be negotiated.  

VM Family Law will be transparent on fees, keeping you updated regularly with the ongoing and overall costs so there will be no surprises.

We will work with you to understand your needs and provide expert-tailored advice to suit you. 

Occasionally, mediation can be helpful to have before entering a prenuptial agreement – this can be a safe, neutral forum to discuss the reasons for the proposals.

Pros and cons of prenuptial agreements

Many people have the misconception that only millionaires will benefit from a prenuptial agreement. There are many advantages for putting a prenuptial agreement in place before getting married.

One advantage is the transparency both partners will have from the onset is a clear understanding of the assets or debts which are solely theirs. 

A disadvantage is that many couples can see this as a trust issue and can cause friction, rather than seeing this as a future prevention for upheaval.

Can I get a prenuptial agreement without a solicitor?

You can prepare your own prenuptial agreement without a solicitor, but it’s highly recommended that you get advice from a solicitor to check that you have covered all aspects and nothing has been missed. A large amount of your wealth could be lost if you haven’t got the time and knowledge to draft the necessary agreement.  There is also the risk that without a lawyer a person can claim either that they did not understand what they were signing or were put under duress to sign.

VM Family Law are always available to help and advise you on your prenuptial agreements and to take the hassle and stress out of drafting your own.

Mediation for prenuptial agreements

Mediation is a forum within which a couple can reach a mutual agreement. A mediator will explore what the couple wants to receive out of the process, ensuring this is referred to and highlighting progression throughout.

A mediator will set an agenda and facilitate the discussions, keeping to the process and agenda that has been agreed. Mediation can help build the prenuptial agreement’s foundations amicably and clearly. 

Please contact a team member if mediation before your prenuptial agreement would benefit you. We offer an initial free appointment of up to one hour with an experienced family lawyer to ensure you receive the best possible advice from the first meeting.