Prenuptial Agreements

Introduction to Prenuptial Agreements

Introduction to Prenuptial Agreements

Prenuptial Agreements or ‘prenups’ were once the reserves of Hollywood stars and the mega-rich. However, they are becoming increasingly popular in any relationship where one partner has more assets than the other at the time of marriage.

They are particularly useful when one partner is expected to receive an inheritance, as a way of protecting assets should the relationship break down sometime in the future under Family Law.

Prenuptial Agreements


Prenups are more common abroad than here in the UK, particularly in the US.

So, what is the legal position regarding prenups in the UK? It may be surprising to learn that this kind of agreement is not actually legally binding in England and Wales. This is because, to date, there is no specific legislation regarding prenups.

However, in the case of Radmacher v Granatino 2010 the Supreme Court stated that in future cases prenups could be binding on the parties if three requirements were met;

  • The Prenuptial Agreement must be entered into freely;

To establish this the court will investigate whether each party has sought independent legal advice for legal aid, which will indicate the parties knowledge of the terms of the Prenuptial agreement UK and therefore whether the parties entered into it freely

  • The parties involved must understand the implications of the agreement;

There must be full and frank disclosure of finances before the prenup is signed so that the parties understand what they may be giving up


  • It must not be unfair to hold the parties to their agreement in the circumstances prevailing.

The courts will always seek to ensure that the needs of children and the financially-weaker party are met, therefore the agreement must contain a provision for this for it to be upheld by the court.

In summary, although not yet legally-binding in the UK, prenups will probably be considered and respected by the courts, providing that the requirements mentioned above are met.

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While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information provided in this article, it does not constitute legal advice and cannot be relied upon as such. Each legal case and issue may have unique facts and circumstances, as a result legallex does not accept any responsibility for liabilities arising as a result of reliance upon the information provided. For further help and guidance, you can always rely on and seek advice from our experienced lawyers.

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