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What is a Prenuptial Agreement?

A prenuptial agreement, often known as a “pre-nup” is a written agreement entered into by spouses-to-be prior to their marriage and which can be used to protect their assets should the marriage break down.

Although prenuptial agreements are not strictly legally binding in the UK, in the landmark case of Radmacher v Granatino (2010) the Supreme Court ruled that the Courts must now give appropriate weight to prenuptial agreements.

A prenuptial agreement is likely to be upheld when both parties understand the nature and effect of the document and intend to be bound by its terms.

Provided both parties seek independent legal advice from a Solicitor, produce full and frank financial disclosure and enter into the agreement freely (without duress), in most cases, the agreement is likely to be upheld by a Judge on divorce, unless it would be unfair to do so.

It is recommended that a prenuptial agreement is signed in the presence of both parties’ Solicitors and is entered into at least 28 days before the date of the marriage. However, it is important that you seek independent legal advice well in advance to avoid any delay before the big day!

Protect your farming assets with a Prenuptial Agreement – keep it in the family

Claire Rutter, Partner in our Family Law team, commented: "Prenuptial agreements can be particularly important in farming families. In most farming cases, the farmhouse is the matrimonial home, passed down from generation to generation. Provisions can be included in a prenuptial agreement to protect inherited farming assets (including farmland and machinery) or a party’s interest in a farming business.

"Often other family members are involved in running a farming business and therefore a prenuptial agreement may not only provide protection for the spouse-to-be but also to other family members."

At Ramsdens, we are accredited members of Resolution and expert family law specialists. if you would like more information on the issues raised in this article or any aspect of Family Law please do not hesitate to contact one of our friendly family law team to arrange a free 30 minute consultation. Call us free on 08000 147720, send us an email or text LAW to 67777 to book a free information session at any of our offices. We also offer early morning and late evening appointments across our offices.