Is a prenup part of your wedding planning?

Hotels and other wedding venues are busy hosting wedding fairs and gearing up for the wedding season, with everyone focused on the details of the big day – one other thing which now sometimes appears on a wedding checklist is to enter into a pre-nuptial agreement, or ‘prenup’.

Of course, nobody gets married with separation in mind, but a pre-nuptial agreement can provide protection if in the future the marriage breaks down. Essentially, the agreement sets out what should happen if the relationship ends and the parties separate.

Entering into a pre-nuptial agreement can be particularly beneficial to those who:-

  1. Are involved in a business (including farming);
  2. Are getting married for a second time and wish to protect the children’s needs from the first marriage; and/or
  3. Have inherited wealth which they would like to ring-fence.

Whilst the financial claims between spouses still exist when the marriage breaks down, a pre-nuptial agreement can be taken into account. There is now greater recognition by the Family Court of pre-nuptial agreements and guidance has been given to say whether the terms of the prenup will be upheld or not. Judges may be willing to uphold the terms of the prenup if:-

  1. Both parties have had independent legal advice;
  2. Full financial disclosure has been made by each party;
  3. The agreement is fair and has been freely entered into; and
  4. The terms were agreed at least 21 days before the wedding.

However, ultimately, it is up to the Judge to decide whether the terms are upheld or not.

It is crucial to consult a specialist family lawyer before you enter into a pre-nuptial agreement. The lawyer can provide tailored advice about whether the proposed terms of the pre-nuptial agreement are fair, reasonable and in your best interests. Further, specific advice can be given as to whether the agreement is likely to be upheld or not.

How we can help

If you need advice on drafting or reviewing a pre-nuptial agreement or want advice on any other family law matter, please contact us.

Katherine Parker is a solicitor in the Family Department at Barker Gotelee Solicitors in Ipswich.

Suffolk Family Solicitors – for more information on our range of legal services, please call the team on 01473 611211 or email

This article is for general information only and does not constitute legal or professional advice. Please note that the law may have changed since this article was published.