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The Top 3 Reasons That Couples Get A Pre-Nup

View profile for James Wright
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The changing of the seasons always brings with it an air of excitement, as many couples start to count down to their summer wedding day.

It’s at this time that we always recommend to the betrothed that they learn a little more about a pre-nuptial agreement and, crucially, why so many couples do get them when tying the knot.

So what is a pre-nuptial agreement?

A pre-nuptial agreement is simply an agreement on how each individual’s money, property, assets, debt and family matters would be split and handled in the event of a divorce.

That sounds a bit unromantic, how will my partner react?

We understand that such matters can be a sensitive topic, particularly in the midst of the excitement of an engagement, however a pre-nuptial agreement exists to create peace of mind and clear understanding for both parties and, ultimately, ensures that both individuals in the marriage feel confident and comfortable in their individual situation when entering into such an important, legally-binding commitment.

A pre-nup can actually strengthen a marriage as it is a clear agreement between two people that removes any of the financial or emotional considerations that can factor in when a couple is contemplating either marriage or a potential divorce, having not had a pre-nuptial agreement in place. 

Is it legally-binding?

No, however it is legally persuasive. They have become more and more influential in recent years and the Court will consider them when deciding on how assets should be split when a couple gets divorced. The Court will always ensure the agreement is fair to both parties, however the pre-nup is an already agreed division of assets and therefore the Court will stick to that agreement more often than not.

So why do people normally get them?

  1. If one of you has assets exceeding the other or assets you want to protect: A pre-nuptial agreement is most beneficial when one party’s assets are greater than the other, or when one party has individual considerations that they’d like to protect such as inheritance or family trusts. A pre-nup ensures that each individual’s assets are protected and remain their own, which can create peace of mind and actually strengthen the connection between two people as the decision to marry is not influenced by personal factors beyond loving each other and wanting to make that commitment
  2. If one or both of you has children from a previous relationship that you’d like to consider separately to your new relationship: A couple may choose to get a pre-nup if one or both of them have children from a previous relationship and want to make provision for those children with assets separate to the ones they’d be prepared to split with their new spouse
  3. Simply to make things easier in the event of a divorce: Having a pre-nup in place significantly reduces complications in the event of a divorce and can dramatically reduce legal fees, as there is a clear agreement already in place for the court to consider when making its decision on how assets should be split. This saves a lot of time spent in court and can speed up a divorce process immeasurably

Is it too late after we’re married?

No, an agreement exists called a post-nuptial agreement which is very similar.

Are they expensive?

Creating a pre-nuptial agreement can be an expensive exercise, often costing at least £2000, however this investment at the start of a marriage could save you a huge amount of money later on in life and gives you peace of mind.

How do I arrange a pre-nuptial agreement?

The earlier you can engage a solicitor, the better. It is important that due time and attention is given to the proper preparation of a pre-nup and therefore it’s important to get legal advice as early as possible, so that you can focus on the exciting bit – your wedding!

Here at Talbots, we have a large family team working across our 7 Midlands offices and would be happy to discuss your requirements with you further. Contact us on 0800 118 1500 to get started.