At Russells we offer a complete service for our clients. This starts by explaining why prenuptial agreements are necessary if you want to protect assets on marriage, drafting a bespoke agreement for you, negotiating terms civilly with the client’s intended spouse/civil partner through to executing and finalising the document.
By ensuring that both parties are independently and fairly represented, we help prevent unnecessary time wasting, expense and upset.
Prenuptial & Postnuptial Agreements
Ideally prenuptial agreements (also known as prenups) should be negotiated well before the intended ceremony and preferably signed 6 weeks before the date of the marriage or civil partnership. If the parties run out of time then the prenup should be followed by a postnup to avoid allegations of duress.
Alternatively, postnuptial agreements are entered into once a marriage or civil partnership has taken place and whilst the couple remain ‘together’. In the case of civil partnerships, a ‘post-partnership agreement’ is drafted.
Prenups and postnups should clearly define how assets will be divided should the marriage or partnership end. These include, but aren’t limited to:
- Family Heirlooms
- Family Assets
- Business Interests
- Pre-Acquired Property Assets
In many cases these assets are ring-fenced in order to protect the rights of the owner should the relationship end.
For those entering second marriages, there may be assets from a previous marriage which you want to protect, and which you intend should eventually pass to your children rather than your new partner. Entering into a pre or post-nup can help protect these assets.
The question everyone asks is “are pre-nups binding”. The simple answer is that a court is not obliged to accept all or part of a pre-nup, but following the Radmacher case in 2010 the court will apply a “fairness” test and check that certain criteria have been satisfied.
These criteria include:
- That the agreement is contractually valid and able to withstand challenges on the basis of misrepresentation.
- The agreement must have been made by deed, and contain a signed statement by both parties acknowledging that the agreement will supersede a court ruling.
- The agreement needs to have been made at least 28 days before the wedding or civil ceremony (if not then a postnup is essential).
- Both parties must have received full disclosure of their partner’s financial situation before the agreement was signed.
- Both parties need to have received independent legal advice prior to signing the agreement.
Specialising in dealing with high profile clients from the music industry, and worlds of media and finance, we assure complete discretion and sensitivity to your situation.
To arrange a prenuptial agreement consultation, contact Carol Ellinas:
Phone: 020 7439 8692