Pre-nuptial and Post-nuptial Agreements

At certain stages of a relationship, a couple may need expert legal advice. 

If you are due to marry and you already have your own assets or wealth separate from your partner, you may be concerned about what would happen to those assets in the unhappy event that your marriage ended in divorce. You may decide you wish to make a formal arrangement to avoid the risk of unresolved issues if the relationship breaks down at a later stage.  Cases involving families, properties and personal assets can become stressful issues if both parties are not on the same page.  Advice from a professional lawyer can help to resolve issues fairly, constructively and as speedily as possible.

By entering into an agreement when both parties to the relationship are on good terms, it is more likely to mean that the agreement reached is objective and fair, rather than trying to reach a resolution once the relationship has ended and emotions are high.
Case law has developed over the past few years to mean that if certain criteria are met, the Court is more likely to hold parties to these agreements and it is becoming more common to have a Pre-Nuptial Agreement (often referred to as a “Prenup”) ahead of marriage or Pre-Contract Agreement ahead of entering into a Civil Partnership.
When you deal with Hughes Paddison you can be assured that you will be treated professionally and personably.  Our specialist lawyers will work with you to understand your particular circumstances, bringing a pragmatic and cost effective approach to our advice.  We will do our utmost to ensure that you are as prepared as you can be for different eventualities.  We will help you understand all of the options that are available to you.  We may suggest various factors to be taken into account which you may not have considered.  We will communicate with the other party in a non-offensive, non-contentious manner. 
Entering into an arrangement, contract, Deed or agreement does not need to be a contentious proposal but rather a way in which you are both able to design what you would like to achieve in the event that the relationship breaks down, to avoid any nasty surprises in the future.
If you are already married and decide that you wish to put something in place to clarify your financial circumstances and intentions for what would happen in the event of separation, this can be dealt with in the form of a post-nuptial agreement. It will be necessary for you to identify your financial assets and any property you may have. We will assist you in determining how you would like your assets divided in the event of your marriage ending. We shall also take into consideration any potential change of circumstances that may occur during your marriage, such as having children or pensions and inheritance, which may affect the division of assets.

We will work with our Private Client team to ensure that your Will reflects what is intended by the pre-nuptial agreement.
Some frequently asked questions and answers about Pre-Nuptial Agreements are set out below.
Frequently asked questions
I would like a Pre-Nuptial Agreement to protect my wealth but I am worried about asking my partner to do this.
A Pre-Nuptial Agreement is not a romantic proposition but it could be as important for your future as the planning of your big day. Some people view it as an insurance policy – something that you never want to have the need for but are glad you are able to call upon should the need arise. Our approach will always be to introduce a Pre-Nuptial Agreement in a non-confrontational way.
My partner wants me to sign a Prenup before our wedding. Should I just sign this?
A Prenup (or Pre-Nuptial Agreement) is an agreement entered into before marriage which sets out how assets are held and what would happen in the event of your divorce. Generally speaking, the Court will likely uphold a Pre-Nuptial Agreement. It is therefore vital that before your sign any documentation you have a clear understanding of your partner’s assets and have proper legal advice. A Pre-Nuptial Agreement will affect you for the rest of your life and if you enter into this without a full appreciation of what this means for you, it may well be a bad deal for you.
We did not draw up a Pre-Nuptial Agreement before our wedding but I like the idea of it. Is there a way to have a similar agreement after we are married?
A Post-Nuptial Agreement is an agreement entered into following marriage with the same aims – to decide how your assets should be dealt with in the event of divorce. Our experienced Family Team can advise and assist you in drawing up a Post-Nuptial Agreement and agreeing the terms with your husband or wife and their solicitors.
Call 01242 574244 or contact us to find out how we can help with your pre-nuptial or post-nuptial agreement.