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Pre – nups – ‘formula’ for long lasting love or recipe for disaster?

Posted on 13 June 2013

Pre-Nuptial Agreements. Family Law. Pardoes

Posted by Imran Khodabocus, Family Law Solicitor

In light of recent news that Tamara Ecclestone, the daughter of the Formula 1 Executive Bernie Ecclestone, has entered into a pre-nuptial agreement ahead of her wedding next Tuesday, we at Pardoes take a few moments to reflect on the current position on pre-nuptial agreements and whether they offer the marrying couple the protection of each other’s assets and contain the formula for long lasting love or whether they are a recipe for disaster?

Pre – nuptial agreements may not necessarily be very romantic but are a practical and important way to avoid future arguments. At Pardoes we can see this being important in a number of scenarios. For example, if you are getting married for the second time. Another is if you are in a farming partnership. A third is if you are in a family business. Naturally the latter two will be of concern to your parents.
Pre--nuptial agreements are not absolutely binding in the courts of England and Wales but in the future we believe that they will become more and more the ‘norm’. It is therefore very important that you seek legal advice if you are thinking of entering into one.

When we look at pre – nuptial agreements, there are essentially two questions which we ask. The first is whether the agreement is valid?  We need to ensure that you have full knowledge of each other’s financial position. We also need to ensure that you are freely signing up to this agreement without any pressure from anyone else. 

The second question we consider is, would it be unfair to give effect to the agreement? When answering this question, we need to consider whether the agreement sufficiently provides for both of your reasonable needs of those of any child/children of the family. Courts want to give effect to valid and fair agreements.

For further information on pre-nuptial agreements, contact one of our family law solicitors or submit an online enquiry.


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