Is a pre-nup on your wedding to-do list?
Whilst this wedding season, most nearlyweds-to-be will be considering invites, dresses, venues and flowers, an increasing number will have pre-nuptial agreements on their minds before they walk down the aisle.
Market research from leading consumer legal services company, Slater and Gordon, shows that more than half (53%) of unmarried couples would only consider getting married, if a pre-nuptial agreement was put in place.
The research is following the news that Britney Spears and her new husband, Sam Asghari, signed an "iron-clad" prenuptial agreement before their wedding, last month. It is understood that one of the conditions of the document is that if the couple were to separate, Sam wouldn't be entitled to any of the tens of millions that Britney earned prior to their marriage. Research also shows that men are more likely to demand a pre-nuptial agreement than women; with 62% of men and 51% of women stating this would potentially be a condition before they agreed to marry. Of those that said that they wouldn't want a pre-nuptial agreement before getting married, 59% said it was because they didn't have any significant assets to include within the agreement. However, according to Jenniffer Brunt, Principal Lawyer within the Slater and Gordon Family Team, this mindset is where couples might be going wrong.
Jenniffer said: "People often think that if they don't own a property, business or have millions in the bank, then they don't have any assets to protect in the event of a divorce, however this may not be the case for several reasons.
"Firstly, assets such as pension, which a person may have had long before meeting their partner, could still be included upon Divorce and be treated as a matrimonial asset. It may be that at the time of the marriage, there were no assets, but there could be the potential of future wealth accrued through career progression or financial investments. You may have children from an earlier relationship and want to protect their future. Your partner may have significant debts at the time of marriage and so you could think about limiting any future lability for those debts. There are many factors to consider".
"It's also important to consider any assets you may acquire during your marriage. This may be the inheritance of a family home your partner did not contribute to financially, a business you established during the marriage or your family business, which you ultimately end up controlling and managing, which again, your spouse had no involvement in. All of these types of assets may be considered as assets to be divided upon divorce.
"We would recommend looking into a pre-nuptial agreement before making a life-long commitment. Whilst not everyone will feel comfortable with starting a marriage this way, in the long-term it can protect you, and your assets significantly."
For more information on Slater and Gordon and the services it offers, visit www.slatergordon.co.uk