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Prenuptial AgreementsPre-nuptial and post-nuptial agreements are more common and carry more weight in England than ever before.

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Pre-nuptial agreements are becoming more and more common in England and Wales and following the decision of the English Supreme Court in the case of the German heiress Katrin Radmacher and her French husband Mr Granatino many people now believe that pre-nuptial agreements are binding. But that is not quite true as yet. At the moment the English Courts still retain jurisdiction with the result that Judges are able to alter or adjust pre-nuptial agreements in certain circumstances. This is why it is so important to draft pre-nuptial agreements carefully and to ensure that they are fair.

But the law is in a state of flux. The Law Commission published its report “Matrimonial property, needs and agreements” on 26 February 2014 proposing that “qualifying” marital agreements should be contractually binding provided that the parties made provision for the parties’ needs. The rationale is to provide certainty and to reduce litigation.

So what are “qualifying” marital agreements?

1) Both parties need to have full disclosure of the other parties financial circumstances. 2) Both parties need to have independent legal advice. 3) The agreement needs to be signed not later than 28 days before the wedding and 4) must be in the form of a deed. 5) The parties must sign a statement confirming that they are contracting out of the court’s jurisdiction.

And what are “needs”? The Law Commission concluded that they could not come up with a hard and fast definition of need beyond existing judicial attempts to define need.

 

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Why Choose Beyer Family Law?

We have over ten years’ experience in advising clients on whether (or not) to enter into pre-nuptial agreements and if so, how to negotiate them. Being dual qualified (German/English) we understand how countries on the continent deal with pre-nuptial agreements and we can advise you on what should be done to ensure that they will be upheld in England and abroad. Lastly, we understand that talking to your partner about a pre-nuptial agreement or to resist entering into a pre-nuptial agreement can be difficult. We are here to help you. Call us now.

Questions? Ask Below ...

Pre-nuptial Agreement Case Example

G is a German national. F a Dutch national. They have a one year old daughter together. G looks after the baby whilst F works as a banker. They intend to reside in London for two to three years before moving to Asia or America depending where F’s job takes them.  F would like to have a pre-nuptial agreement before they marry to ensure what he earned prior to the marriage remains his. G does not mind that but wants to ensure that she participates in the wealth that G generates from the date they get married.

Our Solution

We drafted a pre-nuptial agreement for G that allowed F to keep his pre-marital assets. The agreement stated that whatever both parties earned from the date of the marriage should be shared equally between them. The agreement also ensured that G and the baby would be provided for in the event that the marriage would not last long very long.

“Our door is always open and I am always on hand to help. If you are concerned about your situation or need some advice, you can call me now. It won't cost you anything for us to speak.”

Kerstin Beyer Principal Partner

Thank you for helping me in this difficult situation. I felt so much better having you by my side and knowing that I could always call or email for advice.

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