Pre-Nuptial Agreements & Post Nuptial Agreements Solicitors, London
People are marrying or entering into civil partnerships later, therefore often have significant independent assets which they want to keep separate from becoming part of a financial settlement should they divorce, or their civil partnership dissolve. Equally, second or even third marriages are now commonplace and having lost a proportion of their wealth in their initial divorce, it is understandable those entering a subsequent marriage want to guard their existing capital.
With a sharp business sense, knowledge of share and property portfolios, and an eye for spotting how best to protect your prosperity whatever challenges you face in your relationship, our team, led by Shabana Sultana, herself a business owner and Solicitor with over 20 years’ experience, will ensure your pre or postnuptial agreement stands up in Court.
Contact our Pre-Nuptial Agreement Solicitors in London
The right solicitor changes everything. Anglo Law Solicitors provides expert legal advice on Pre-Nuptial Agreements & Post Nuptial Agreements.
Speak directly to a family solicitor now on 020 3741 9583 or complete our online contact form for your free consultation. For evening and weekend assistance, please call our family law solicitors on 07749 448362.
Anglo law solicitors serve client across the following areas:
The City of London, Westminster, Kensington & Chelsea, Southwark, Bishopsgate, Billingsgate, Canary Wharf, Spitalfields, Aldgate, Bethnal Green, Whitechapel, Tower Hamlets, Redbridge, Kent, Tunbridge Wells, West Malling, Chafford Hundred, Chelmsford, Brentwood, Epping & Loughton
What is a pre-nuptial agreement?
A pre-nuptial agreement is a legal agreement made between two people before entering into a marriage. Civil partners can also enter into an agreement of an identical nature, sometimes referred to as a pre-civil partnership agreement or pre-registration agreement. For simplicity, reference to pre-nuptial agreements in this page includes reference to pre-civil partnership agreements.
What is a post-nuptial agreement?
Post-nuptial agreements are essentially the same as a pre-nuptial agreement, the difference being they are entered into after the marriage has taken place. These are sometimes entered into if one spouse attains significant wealth and the couple agree it is fair that it remain non-matrimonial property. Another reason for entering into a post-nuptial agreement is if you and your spouse are experiencing difficulties and are considering separation. By organising your financial position in advance, a great deal of stress and possible animosity can be avoided if you do decide to divorce.
Are nuptial agreements legally binding?
Pre-nuptial agreements are not legally binding. However, the landmark Supreme Court case of Radmacher v Granatino  UKSC 42 ruled:
"The court should give effect to a nuptial agreement that is freely entered into by each party with a full appreciation of its implications unless in the circumstances prevailing it would not be fair to hold the parties to the agreement."
This means the court has the discretion to overrule all or part of a nuptial agreement if any element is deemed unfair.
How does the court decide whether or not an agreement is fair?
The case of Radmacher set out a three-stage test to establish whether a nuptial agreement should be considered fair. The court will ask:
- was the agreement freely entered into?
- did the parties have a full appreciation of the implications of the agreement? and
- is it fair to hold the parties to the agreement in the circumstances prevailing?
The court will take into consideration factors such as the age of each party, their emotional states, and previous experiences regarding long-term relationships. If one party did not obtain independent legal advice, it is highly unlikely the agreement will be upheld.
The Supreme Court also gave the following guidance when it comes to assessing whether a nuptial agreement is fair:
- the agreement cannot prejudice the interests of any children in the family
- the court should not be “patronising and paternalistic” – the fact the parties are grown adults entering into an agreement must be respected
- ringfencing assets that were obtained prior to marriage is not inherently unfair the longer a marriage lasts, the more likely a pre-nuptial
- agreement may be deemed unfair because of changes of circumstances
- if the agreement leaves one party in a real state of need and the other comfortably provided for, it is likely to be deemed unfair
- if both parties agree that one spouse should give up work to look after the children and the agreement does not provide for an element of
- compensation for loss of earning potential and career, then it may be deemed unfair
Nuptial agreements are designed to provide certainty; therefore, it is imperative that each party is confident what they have contractually entered into will be upheld in court should they divorce. Not only will we ensure the agreement is meticulously drafted, but we will also ensure you have a full understanding of the future impact of every clause. Your legal advice will be documented so you can provide evidence that independent legal advice was received prior to signing. In addition, we will advise you on the life-events which should trigger a revision of the agreement. These include having children or if one spouse is made redundant. By keeping the agreement current, there is a greater chance it will be deemed fair.
What are the legal requirements of a pre-nuptial agreement?
A valid pre-nuptial agreement must:
- conform to the legal requirements of a contract
- be validly executed as a deed and contain a “relevant statement”
- be made prior to 28 days before the marriage takes place
- full financial disclosure must be made by both parties
- both parties receiving independent legal advice
Our team will take the time to discover your objectives and ensure your nuptial agreement is valid and stands up in court.
Please call our office on 0203 741 9583 to make an appointment with Shabana or one of her team to receive legal advice related to pre and post-nuptial agreements.