Pre-Nups: Not Just For The Rich And Famous

It is estimated that one in five couples married since 2000 may have a pre-nuptial agreement in place, confirming what legal professionals have been saying – that pre-nups are no longer reserved for the rich and famous, explains Nicola Rushton, family lawyer at Farleys Solicitors

Back in the 1970s, just 1.5 per cent of couples took the option to have a pre-nuptial agreement in place. This has now risen significantly to 20 per cent, with couples where the wife earns more or the same as their partner, being more likely to put a pre-nuptial agreement in place.

The findings also showed that contrary to popular belief, rather than increasing the chance of divorce, pre-nups actually made splits less likely during the first decade of marriage.

If, however, you do find yourself taking the difficult decision to divorce, while pre-nuptial agreements are not legally binding in court, they do hold some weight and are increasingly being upheld by the family court.

In order for a pre-nuptial agreement to stand a chance of being upheld during court proceedings, it must have been entered into freely and with a full understanding of the implications. This can be particularly proven where both parties took independent legal advice before signing the agreement and the agreement was entered into no less than 28 days before the wedding to avoid ‘undue duress’. So, if you are planning a spring 2022 wedding, now would be the best time to approach a family law specialist to discuss your requirements.

A pre-nuptial agreement is a bespoke document which is tailored to the individual couple. It may include provisions as to how their income, assets, and pensions would be divided on divorce or it could be written almost as a ‘living together agreement’ stipulating how assets and accounts will be managed during the marriage. All of these options and their implications can be examined with a legal advisor prior to the drafting of the agreement.

As your big day approaches, it can be easy to find yourself distracted by organising the day itself but, if you want to have the peace of mind that your future is secure, it would be savvy to add a discussion with your family lawyer to that wedding checklist!

For further advice on pre-nuptial agreements and other marital agreements, speak to Farleys’ family team on 01254 368 040 or email:



Tedd Walmsley

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