Pre- & Post-Nuptial Agreements
A pre-nuptial agreement is a contract a couple enters into at least 21 days prior to marriage. Sometimes referred to as "prenup", it sets out each party's intentions in regard to their joint and sole assets owned (this will include property, income, debts, and inheritance) and how they will be divided in the event of a breakdown of the marriage.
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While some people may view this type of agreement as unromantic, others consider it to be good planning and have often viewed the agreement as an insurance policy, believing it can play an important part in maintaining an honest and open communication in a loving relationship. Unfortunately, marriages can and often do come to an end, so entering into a pre-nuptial agreement could protect you and your partner from serious financial and emotional stress if the worst happens.
There are certain circumstances where it's strongly advisable to enter into a pre-nuptial agreement. For example, if you have substantial assets and you want to make sure they're protected if your marriage breaks down, this type of agreement might be ideal. A prenup may also be a good option if you have been previously married or part of a civil partnership and you own property that you want to keep separate, such as for your own children. It may also help if there are international elements to your marriage, such as if you and your partner are of different nationalities. In this instance, a prenup could offer you protection if financial awards were to be made against you in the courts of more than one country.
A post-nuptial agreement works in exactly the same way as a pre-nuptial agreement — the only difference is that it is entered into post-marriage and usually following the couple's return from honeymoon.
The cost of drawing up a pre-nuptial agreement can vary. The fee you pay will often depend on how much work is involved and the amount and nature of your assets. It can also depend on whether there are any children from any previous marriages or civil partnerships involved.
*Our family team based in Mayfair, London offers both fixed fees and flexible pricing on pre- and post-nuptial agreements.
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