It’s 2018. Maybe this is the year to be honest about marriage and take the stigma out of marriage breakdown. Maybe, 2018 should be the year of the prenup?
Discussions on prenuptial agreements are not new. After all, prenups have been around for some time. They are very popular, routine even, in the United States and there are signs they have been growing in popularity here. Certainly, at Woolley & Co we have seen a rise in enquiries about prenuptial agreements over the last 18 months. However, that has not necessarily translated into people having a proper agreement drawn up.
What can we do to get more traction and make it OK to be honest before you get married and talk about what you want to happen if, ultimately things don’t go well?
Latest figures from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) show 42 percent of marriages in England and Wales end in divorce. Despite this, very few couples put “arrange a prenup” on their to-do list when arranging the nuptials. They can pay out thousands on flowers, dresses, make-up, hairstyling, venue, food, drinks – but a prenuptial agreement seems to be a step too far. It is still seen as unromantic and expensive.
Why bother with a prenup, what are the benefits?
A properly prepared prenup can set out how a couple would like to split their assets on divorce. Drawn up by a family lawyer with both sides taking legal advice before signing it, a prenuptial agreement will usually be considered and adhered to by the family courts.
The big benefit is it can save a lot of time, money and heartache if things do go wrong, as they do for almost half of married couples. Go back 40 years and divorce was still very much frowned upon, if not quite a taboo. We have come a long way since then, as we have done with so many things. Think about having children out of wedlock for instance, or gay marriage. However, we still have some way to go on the acceptance of prenuptial agreements as part of the normal wedding planning process.
Need to know more?
In a bid to help people thinking about a prenup we’ve put together several resources you can access or download from our website:
Your Guide to Creating a Binding Prenuptial Agreement (opens as PDF in new window)
So, can we try and make 2018 the year of the prenuptial agreement by really pushing the benefits and highlighting how easy they can be to prepare? Let’s have an honest conversation about marriage for once. It simply doesn’t work for everyone, no matter how much you love each other when you marry, so maybe a prenuptial agreement is just a useful insurance policy in case the worse happening?
Woolley & Co, Divorce and Family Law Solicitors