The Rising Popularity of Pre-Nups
With statistics showing that 42% of marriages end in divorce, marriage breakdown is something very real that people need to consider as a possible outcome. Pre-nuptial agreements (pre-nups) are now legally recognised in UK courts, and with the stigma attached to them as being only for the rich and famous being broken down, we're seeing increasing numbers of people choosing to use them.
Benefits of Pre-Nups
Our Associate specialising in Family Law
, Carol Chrisfield, explains the benefits of pre-nups:"We're seeing an increasing popularity of pre-nups, and we're having more clients asking us to help draft and provide advice in relation to this. They ultimately help to provide greater security for their future and peace of mind."
Pre-nups can often be favoured because they can help avoid court action in the future, and the associated stress and cost of this. Acrimonious divorce battles can be lengthy and can see separating couples spending a fortune on legal costs as they fight each other for the settlement they want.
This was shown in the recent divorce battle between former beauty queen Ekaterina Fields
and lawyer Richard Fields
, which saw the pair spend a whopping £1 million on legal fees
It is impossible for people to predict how they'll feel in the future, or if they'll be able to reach a settlement amicably, which is why agreeing in advance has its benefits.
Fool Me Once
Pre-nuptial agreements are also often chosen by people who have been through a divorce
in the past and are entering into a second marriage.
Carol explains why they are more popular with people remarrying:"These individuals have often been through a messy divorce in the past, and now believe that it is better to have a defined agreement in place. People remarrying tend to have greater assets and they may have children from a previous relationship that they need and wish to provide for."
Getting it Right
Although pre-nups are largely recognised here in the UK following a case in 2010 where an agreement protecting the wealth of a German heiress was upheld, we are still waiting to see if legislation will be introduced.
Anyone considering a pre-nuptial agreement in the UK should get legal help
, as pre-nups are still vulnerable to being challenged.An agreement could risk being challenged for a number of reasons, for example, it must cater for the financially weaker spouse and should consider future changes in circumstances, particularly in relation to children of the family. It is therefore important to obtain legal advice to help safeguard you and to ensure as far as possible that the agreement is upheld in the event that one day you choose to split.