Planning your wedding is an exciting time of your life, it is also important to financially secure your future. No one can predict how life will turn out and, whilst the intention is to remain married for life, sadly in reality this is not always the case. In some situations, it is sensible to put together an agreement to plan for your future, so you can get married with the peace of mind that all eventualities have been addressed.
While pre-nuptial agreements (often known as pre-nups) are not totally legally binding and can be challenged in the event of a relationship failing, they will generally be taken into account by a court during divorce proceedings, provided they are drafted correctly with appropriate legal advice.
Having a pre-nup in place also makes it much less likely court proceedings will be required during divorce or separation as you will already have the practical details of your separation agreed. This can significantly reduce the potential for conflict and expense through unnecessary legal proceedings if you do one day separate.
Getting a pre-nuptial agreement can be a good option for any couple, but they are particularly popular for second marriage (especially where one or both parties have children from a previous relationship) and where one partner has considerable assets accrued before you both met.
Similar protections can also be offered by post-nuptial agreements (for those already married), pre-civil partnership agreements (for civil partners) and co-habitation agreements (for unmarried couples).
At hpjv solicitors, our lawyers can offer you that reassurance and provide specialist advice on achieving the best arrangement for you, explaining the process in a straightforward manner.
For more information or to speak to one of our experts please call us on:
01633 242 526
How we can help you with pre-nuptial agreements
Drafting pre-nuptial agreements
We regularly draft pre-nups for a wide range of clients, so can produce an agreement that protects your interests while being fair to both parties, making sure it meets the requirements to have legal standing.
Reviewing pre-nuptial agreements
If you have been asked to sign a pre-nup by your partner, we can review the terms of the agreement for you and provide advice on whether the agreement offers a fair reflection of your interests. We can also suggest and negotiate amendments where required.
Pre-nuptial agreements are usually most effective if both partners work together to agree the terms before drafting the agreement. We can advise and represent you during such negotiations, helping the process to go smoothly and ensuring your long-term interests stay protected.
If you are already married and want the same protection as that offered by a pre-nup, we can assist you with creating a post-nuptial agreement (or ‘post-nup’). This can be created at any time after you get married and can be useful if you had a pre-nup and your circumstances have changed (e.g. you have had children) or if you simply want the reassurance of knowing what will happen if you ever separate.
It is now common for couples to live together without getting married or entering a civil partnership and many people make the mistake of thinking this gives them rights under the principle of ‘common law marriage’. However, there is no such thing and you will have no legal rights over each other’s assets if you separate. A cohabitation agreement can allow you to agree how your assets will be divided if your relationship ends, giving you peace of mind.
Pre-civil partnership agreements
Sometimes referred to as pre-registration agreements, this type of agreement offers essentially the same protections as a pre-nup, but for civil partners. We can assist with drafting, reviewing and negotiating these agreements, making sure your future financial security is taken care of.
Advice on pre-nuptial agreements during divorce
If you are facing the prospect of divorce and have a pre-nup in place, our family lawyers can advise you on the likely consequences of that agreement. This includes whether it meets the standard to have legal standing, whether there are reasons why the agreement might be considered out of date (e.g. if you have had children since it was made) and any other issues you need to consider.
Common questions about pre-nuptial agreements
What is a pre-nuptial agreement?
Pre-nuptial agreements set out in writing what should happen to your assets such as your home and savings if your relationship breaks down. They allow forward planning for achieving a fair settlement should your relationship one day break down.
Do I need a pre-nup?
Pre-nups (and the various equivalents) are worth considering for any couple getting married, entering a civil partnership or cohabiting. However, they can be particularly valuable for situations including where:
- You have been married before
- One or both partners have children from a previous relationship
- There is a big difference in assets or income between you and your partner
- You have a business or other key assets you wish to protect
Why do I need a lawyer for a pre-nup?
To ensure a pre-nup has legal standing, it needs to be drafted properly and the right process needs to be followed, with both parties needing to have independent legal advice before signing.
Your agreement will need to be:
- In writing
- Fair to both parties
- Include a complete disclosure of assets by both parties
- Signed at least 21 days before you marry
Our expertise with pre-nuptial agreements
With many years of experience in dealing with pre-nups, post-nups and other types of living together agreements, our family lawyers in Newport can provide clear, confident guidance that protects your interests at every stage of your relationship.
We have secured the Law Society’s Family Law Advanced accreditation, reflecting our strong expertise across a wide range of family law matters, including pre-nuptial agreements.
Our team includes members of Resolution, a group of family lawyers committed to removing the conflict family law, so should any dispute arise over a pre-nuptial agreement, we can help you find an amicable solution quickly and cost-effectively.
HPJV Solicitors is Lexcel accredited by the Law Society for the strength of our practice management and client care. We are independently regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA).
Speak to our pre-nuptial agreement solicitors in Newport today
For more information or to speak to one of our family law experts about any aspect of pre-nuptial agreements, post-nuptial agreements, cohabitation agreements of pre-civil partnership agreements, please call us on: 01633 242 526