Prenups, petnups and postnups: a realistic strategy to marriage

With the continuing cost-of-living disaster, an rising variety of persons are contemplating the extra sensible facets of marriage, significantly the funds. The function of the prenuptial settlement, extra colloquially referred to as a “prenup,” is among the extra urgent points to come back to mild and a rising concern within the UK.

Bristol-based Companion, Joanna Newton, explains extra about prenups, and different agreements that {couples} can use to guard their funds forward of marriage.


A prenuptial settlement combines romance and realism. These written agreements are extraordinarily frequent in america, particularly amongst rich people and celebrities.

Within the US, a prenuptial settlement specifies who can be chargeable for every partner’s property all through the wedding. This consists of property and different massive property, in addition to cash. Within the occasion of a wedding breakdown, the prenuptial settlement can be used to find out who owns the property following a divorce. Prenuptial agreements are well-liked among the many rich, significantly within the present financial local weather, as a result of they function a security internet and a type of safety.

Prenuptial agreements will not be presently legally binding in England and Wales, as they’re in lots of states in america. Nonetheless, they’re given vital weight by household courts when making choices about closing monetary orders, supplied they’re correctly drafted by a authorized knowledgeable.

Household attorneys are seeing a rise within the variety of {couples} who need to draught prenuptial agreements to guard their property and, in lots of circumstances, their kids. Inside fashionable household constructions, kids are incessantly born to single mother and father who later marry. Prenuptial agreements can be utilized to financially defend the couple’s kids, which is a motivating issue for a lot of.

Sure necessities have to be met to ensure that a prenup to be thought-about legitimate in an English or Welsh household courtroom. The settlement have to be signed no less than 21 days earlier than the marriage, be affordable and updated, and be drafted by a household lawyer. Each events should have obtained authorized recommendation and supplied full monetary disclosure.


Together with the prenuptial settlement, many {couples} select to have a ‘petnup’ in place. With pets, significantly canines, being included in engagements and weddings and regarded by many as members of the family, this could solely be a pure extension of the prenup. A petnup, like a prenup, is used to find out who owns the pet within the occasion of divorce or relationship breakdown, and it helps to keep away from pointless misery for each people and animals.

A proposal and a prenup would be the most agreeable technique to put together for marriage for the extra sensible romantics.


Nonetheless, there’s a barely much less well-known doc referred to as a postnuptial settlement that capabilities equally to a prenup however can be utilized by {couples} who’re already married. This might be as a result of one accomplice has obtained a big sum of cash, comparable to an inheritance, or the couple decides that with kids and property rising basically, they require monetary and authorized safety.

A postnuptial settlement gives some safety by defining who owns what and what occurs to it if the wedding ends in divorce. The postnup may be carried out at any level throughout a wedding and can be utilized to handle the scenario on the time of writing or any future occasions, such because the beginning of youngsters.

If the couple is divorcing, a household courtroom in England and Wales will contemplate the postnuptial settlement together with different elements. These could embrace the size of the wedding, monetary property, and every partner’s contribution. Once more, the doc have to be ready by a household lawyer, and every partner should have obtained authorized recommendation.

Cohabitation agreements

Should you’re in a long-term relationship and need to take the following step (like transferring in collectively or shopping for a home collectively), signing a cohabitation settlement may give you some peace of thoughts if the connection doesn’t work out. Cohabiting {couples}, in contrast to married {couples}, would not have the identical authorized rights, and their claims are restricted to monetary preparations for kids and property possession.

A cohabitation settlement can provide some safety to cohabiting {couples} by recording, amongst different issues, how current property are owned, whether or not there have been any unmatched contributions in any owned property, how property can be divided upon separation, and what would occur to particular funds comparable to any inheritances that one celebration could deliver into the connection.

Sadly, there may be presently little or no steerage on cohabitation agreements. Nonetheless, if correctly drafted by a household lawyer and cling to the overall tenets of a prenup, they’re more likely to be upheld by a courtroom within the occasion of a dispute if the connection fails.

Helpful hyperlinks

Stowe Assist – Cohabitation