According to recent divorce statistics released by the Office of National Statistics (ONS) at the end of 2022, divorces rates during 2021 saw a 9.6% increase compared with 2020, although figures could have been affected by disruption to family court activities during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic; and the increase in divorces granted in 2021 may partially reflect these delays as well as the impact of the pandemic on divorce applications. However, typical trends show that nearly 1 in 5 marriages will end in divorce by their 10th wedding anniversary and previous figures show an increase in divorces during the first year of marriage.
Those planning on getting married are likely thinking about something other than what would happen should the relationship break down. However, protecting pre-existing financial assets, particularly in cases of significant pre-marital or family wealth or where there are children from a previous relationship, can give you peace of mind.
A Pre-Marital Agreement also referred to as a ‘pre-nup’ is a formal, written agreement between two partners before marriage (or post-nuptial agreement ‘post-nup’ if entered into after marriage). It sets out ownership of all their belongings (including money, assets, and property) and explains how it will be divided in the event of the breakdown of their marriage.
Some perceive pre-nuptial agreements to be pessimistic and unromantic. Others argue that a pre-nup can protect against lengthy and financially costly disputes.
Will my pre-nup be recognised in the UK?
English law does not formally recognise pre-marital agreements in the same way that other countries do. However, when correctly drafted, the English Courts have given pre-marital agreements weight in several cases in recent years and treated them as significant when deciding how to divide assets.
While there are no guarantees that the court will uphold the terms of a pre-marital agreement unless there is a significant shift in the law, we can help advise on putting wealth and asset protection measures in place. Following a discussion regarding your specific circumstances, one of our expert lawyers will draft a document that will give a pre-marital agreement the best chance of being upheld if challenged later.
Prenuptial Agreement and Family Law Solicitors
Pre-nuptial agreements and family law disputes are complex areas of the law and require expert advice. Please get in touch with us on 0208 974 7490 or firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange an initial consultation to discuss the best way forward for you, and we will provide you with further and specific advice tailored to your circumstances.
When entering a marriage, there are other legal documents you should consider. We can also advise on Wills, Lasting Powers of Attorney, and inheritance tax planning and, in the case of business owners, advise on how to protect the family firm should the marriage not work out.
Our experienced and understanding team are here to help you. We will work with you to ensure the best possible outcome.
This blog post is not intended to be taken as advice or acted upon. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our team of solicitors.