Engaged couples should be having a provocative bedtime chat before they walk down the aisle – about getting a prenup! I must admit I giggled when a colleague commented at the Woolley & Co Annual Conference in May that couples didn’t talk about legal issues before they get married because “there was nothing sexy about a prenup”. I’d never thought of the law – or chatting about it - as an aphrodisiac before.
A common question I get asked during the divorce process from worried dads is: what rights do I have as a father?
The first thing to say in response to this is that the law is focused on, and based around, the needs and rights of the children, not those of the parents. It is what is best for the children. Often that will be to ensure a healthy, supportive relationship is maintained with both mum and dad. In broad terms, it is considered to be their right to have a relationship with both parents.
Recently I was asked what happens if an engagement breaks down and one party requests the return of the engagement ring. Now you might assume that it would be the property of the person who received the “gift”. This is not so straightforward though and consideration must be given as to whether this ring was a family heirloom or other sentimental piece of jewellery from the giver’s family.
Prenuptial agreements are becoming increasingly popular, at least if the number of enquiries our solicitors receive is anything to go by. I suppose with all the headline news about cases where couples spend months, and in some cases years, arguing over their divorce settlement it’s hardly surprising that some people want a degree of certainty about their financial future, should their marriage not work out. Many of the people we speak to ask whether they can prepare their...
When a couple separate whether one party is entitled to claim spousal maintenance from the other is a common concern. There are several factors that need to be considered:
- Length of marriage
- Whether each party is working
- The age of the parties
- Who is looking after any children of the marriage
- Can both parties manage financially without spousal maintenance?
It’s important to understand that spousal maintenance is just that, financial support from one spouse to another paid on the breakdown of a marriage. It does not apply to unmarried couples and is different to child maintenance.