Post Nuptial Agreement

2 min read
Post Nuptial Agreement from Parachute Law; an older couple sign an agreement together

Post nuptial agreements are a contract between a married couple or civil partnership, whereby you agree your property rights over any assets you both may hold, in the event of death or divorce. While similar to a Pre nuptial agreement they can be drawn up at any time after marriage.

A post nuptial agreement can be useful in a number of situations:
  • To bequeath assets to beneficiaries other than your spouse
  • If you brought unequal capital into the marriage and would like to make sure that this is reflected in the event of divorce
  • If one party focuses on childcare or homemaking while the other furthers their career, to compensate the stay at home partner
  • To deter further infidelity in a troubled marriage

Can a postnuptial agreement save a marriage?

In some cases, couples use post nuptial agreements to rescue their relationships from divorce.

The couple sign a postnup to give one party greater property rights in the event of divorce. The unfaithful partner stands to lose a lot of money if they further jeopardise the marriage.

What can be included in a postnuptial agreement?

  • How the couple will divide assets such as property in the event of divorce
  • Whether one spouse will pay spousal support (and how long for)
  • How marital debts will be divided
  • How assets will pass if either spouse dies

Is a postnuptial agreement legally binding?

Nuptial agreements are not legally binding in the UK. Family courts use this precedent from a supreme court case to decide whether to enforce the agreement.

“The court should give effect to a nuptial agreement that is freely entered into by each party with a full appreciation of its implications unless in the circumstances prevailing it would not be fair to hold the parties to their agreement.”

This means:
  • You and your spouse must receive separate independent legal advice
  • It must be fair (The terms should give you both somewhere to live and money to live on)
  • Full financial disclosure is crucial
  • There must have been enough time for both parties to give due care and consideration to the agreement.
  • Ideally, sign the document 28+ days in advance of the marriage or civil partnership
  • The court's main responsibility is to divide property fairly. They can and will overrule the agreement to do so, especially in the interests of any children affected.

Frequently Asked Questions
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