"If we get married - do I need a pre-nuptial agreement?

If you are living with your partner and marriage is on the horizon, then a pre-nuptial agreement should be on the top of your to do list!

While it may not exactly be the most romantic task, a pre-nuptial agreement (sometimes called a pre-nup, pre-marital agreement or pre-nuptial contract) sets out yours and your future spouse’s respective financial positions. A pre-nup is designed to clarify how you intend to manage your finances during your marriage and regulate what should happen if a marriage were to end in divorce.

If you do not have a pre-nup, it is still never too late to enter into a post-nuptial agreement once you are married.

Nuptial agreements are particularly important in second marriages or if you’re marrying later in life – where you may wish to ring fence and protect what you brought into the marriage from your earlier relationship, or ensure that you can pass it on to your children from previous relationships. They can also be useful in any marriage to help protect family businesses or wealth that is likely to be inherited or gifted to either of you by relatives.

Pre-nups or post-nups can help to minimise the financial and emotional impact on the family in the event of a divorce.

Currently in UK law, pre-nups cannot completely overrule the court's ability to decide how your finances should be divided on a divorce. However, when deciding on appropriate financial provision, the court is likely to give substantial weight to a pre-nuptial agreement.  You should both expect to be held to the agreement, as long as it has been entered into properly. It is therefore really important to take legal advice and understand your options fully before you sign a pre-nup.

Expert legal advice

For more information or an informal chat about your next steps, contact us on 0344 326 0450 or email us.

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