Many couples across Derbyshire are still waiting to wed after their ceremonies were canceled and postponed due to lockdown restrictions. Others are looking to end their relationship, and thanks to a new development in divorce law, it’s easier than ever.
Earlier this month a ‘no-fault’ element was introduced into divorce law which removed the need for couples seeking divorce to prove that a relationship had broken down. Now a Derby legal director has given his advice to couples wanting to get married who might want to consider how divorce can be made easier, should the day ever arise.
Layla Babadi, general counsel and family law attorney at Nelsons, explained why prenuptial agreements are becoming increasingly popular. She said: “A prenuptial agreement, or prenuptial agreement, is an agreement made by a couple before they get married or enter into a civil partnership.
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“It sets out how they wish their property to be divided in the event of a divorce or the dissolution of their civil partnership. Prenuptial agreements are not automatically enforceable in English and Welsh courts.
“Commonly associated with the rich and famous, prenuptial agreements can often be sensationalized by news reports. This has led to the widespread belief that agreements are unfair, worthless, and unromantic, when in fact they can be a sensible, fair, and transparent way to discuss financial matters and agree the outcome in the event of a separation.
A prenuptial agreement must be agreed upon by both parties, with full disclosure of all outstanding finances, debts and accounts. In the event of a couple’s divorce, such an agreement will financially protect each party and any children who may be born of the marriage.
Ms Babadi added: “While not everyone wants to contemplate the end of a marriage or civil partnership before it has even begun, prenuptial agreements are certainly gaining popularity as a good way to to help couples decide what should happen in the event of a divorce.
“Creating a prenuptial agreement also requires certain formalities to be followed, which can help bring greater peace of mind to both parties.”
Before entering into a prenuptial agreement, Ms. Babadi sets out the following expectations behind such an agreement:
The agreement should be reached by both parties without any pressure from one party on the other
An agreement signed within 21 days of the marriage or PACS is generally considered inappropriate
Both parties must fully appreciate the implications of entering into the agreement. Before signing any agreement, each party must be fully informed of the other’s financial situation.
Individuals should both seek independent legal advice, prior to entering into the agreement, from a family law attorney
The agreement must be fair and include provisions for all children and future children. It must meet the needs of the parties and any children
Revise the prenuptial agreement if circumstances change, such as the birth of children.
When considering a prenuptial agreement, Ms Babadi recommends that there are three golden rules that all couples should follow. She recommends that they plan well in advance and not wait until the last minute, couples think with their heads and not with their hearts, and remember that agreements are not just about protecting the “wealthiest partner”. “.
She said: “Traditionally, a prenuptial agreement determines what happens to the assets each party brings to the marriage. But the agreement can also cover debts, future inheritance, and financial resources gifted from outside the marriage. You will both benefit from having the agreement in place.
“A prenuptial agreement doesn’t have to be an unromantic, daunting or depressing task. An agreement can often help couples better understand where they are at the start or during a marriage or civil partnership and in the event of a divorce. Hopefully the deal will never be needed and a couple will enjoy many happy years together.”