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JR Jones Solicitors Birmingham
solicitors Birmingham

Prenuptial Agreements

Our specialist family solicitors can advise you on all aspects of marriage and civil partnerships, including prenuptial agreements. Please contact us for advice.

What is a Prenuptial Agreement?

A prenuptial agreement is a written agreement which a couple enter into prior to getting married or entering into a civil partnership. The agreement sets out exactly how their assets will be divided should they later separate or divorce.

Why would I want a Prenuptial Agreement?

The most common use is where one partner has substantial wealth prior to the marriage, and seeks to protect that wealth in the event of the marriage failing.

As an example, when someone has existing family wealth which has been passed down to them, or they have an expectation of inheriting that wealth during the marriage, they may wish to protect that future inheritance to ensure that it stays in their family.

Is a Prenuptial Agreement legally binding in England?

Prenuptial agreements are not currently legally binding in England, however that does not mean that they are not worthwhile.

In general, as long as the creation of the prenuptial contact usagreement was done following certain guidelines and safeguards, then a Judge is likely to uphold it when overseeing a divorce case.

The following safeguards should be met, to maximize the chance of a prenuptial agreement being valid:

  • The agreement must not be entered into less than 21 days before the marriage.
  • Neither party was under pressure or duress to sign the agreement against their will.
  • There has been no significant change which would make the agreement inappropriate (such as the birth of children).
  • The husband and the wife both received separate, independent legal advice about the agreement at the outset.
  • Full and frank financial disclosure of both parties’ assets was made prior to the agreement. i.e., assets were not hidden.
  • The agreement has to be fair and realistic. If the division of assets is weighted too heavily in the favour of one party, it may be judged to be unfair by the courts.
  • Pre-nuptial agreements should be reviewed and amended during the course of the marriage, particularly when any child or children are born and periodically in any event.

For more information on prenuptial agreements, please contact us.