What is a postnuptial agreement?

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What is a postnuptial agreement?

A Postnuptial agreement is a contract that is drawn up after a couple gets married, or enters into a civil partnership.

Why should I get a postnuptial agreement?

A Postnuptial Agreement can be very useful when circumstances within a marriage may have changed, for example when one party has inherited money or property and wishes this to be dealt with in a specific way.

Some other benefits of postnups include:

  • Postnups provide extra peace of mind and certainty about financial futures in case the relationship breaks down including the divisions of pensions.
  • Postnups serve as a record of the assets which have been brought into the marriage by each spouse or civil partner
  • If there are children from previous marriages, a postnuptial agreement can help to protect their inheritance
  • You can include the payment of any debts that you hold in your sole or joint names
  • In a postnuptial agreement you can decide what you will leave to your spouse when you die.

How do I make a postnuptial agreement?

A family solicitor can help you to draft a post-nuptial agreement, particularly if your financial circumstances are complex.

We always strongly recommend that each person has specialist independent legal advice to protect their position. We regularly work constructively with other law firms to ensure that happens. If you are considering a postnuptial agreement, contact us today.

Are Postnuptial agreements legally binding?

A post-nuptial agreement is not currently legally binding in England and Wales.

However, while a court is not obliged to follow the contents of your agreement, it will normally be taken into consideration. Courts will typically implement a postnup if:

  • the agreement has been freely entered into by both spouses – there must be no undue pressure on either party or any fraud
  • both spouses intended to be legally bound by the agreement
  • both spouses have a full appreciation of its implications, gained through independent legal advice
  • there has been no substantial change in circumstances between agreeing the postnup and the court hearing which would make the terms of the postnup ‘manifestly unjust’
  • the agreement provides for any dependent children
  • there has been full disclosure of assets, including property, pensions, savings and investments.

What’s included in a postnuptial agreement?

A postnuptial agreement should include a detailed breakdown of finances such as assets and debts, current income and any expected income. It should also include how these will be divided in the event of a divorce and what maintenance payments will need to be made where appropriate

How much does a postnup cost?

The cost of a prenuptial agreement varies greatly depending on its complexity. To get a better idea for you, you should meet with a lawyer for a consultation. 

At Goughs Solicitors, we offer a 30 minute consultation. Our family lawyers are experts in all aspects of pre-nuptial agreements and will provide specialist advice tailored to you and your circumstances. 

When can I get a postnuptial agreement?

A post-nuptial agreement can only be drawn up and signed once your marriage has taken place (if it’s before the marriage then it’s a prenuptial agreement. 

There is no time limit on making a postnup, you can do this at any time after you marry.

Once your post-nuptial agreement is drawn up, you should review it on a regular basis. Your circumstances can change.

Can I have a postnuptial agreement if I already have a prenuptial agreement?

Our family lawyers will take the time to explain your options and what should be included in a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement. The advice is bespoke to you and will depend on yours and your partner’s personal and financial circumstances.

Can Goughs help me with my postnuptial agreement?

Yes! At Goughs, we have the necessary legal expertise to ensure you get the best advice you need to get your situation happily settled before the celebrations begin.

If you are considering a prenuptial agreement, or you have signed a prenuptial agreement and would like advice, please contact a member of our Family Team. We’re always happy to help.

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