Can You Challenge a Prenuptial Agreement?

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Can you challenge a prenuptial agreement? If you are looking for information regarding contesting a prenuptial agreement, our panel of expert family solicitors can help. We understand that when entering into a marriage or civil partnership, divorce and challenging a prenup is the last thing on your mind. 

Our family law panel of experts are on hand to assist you through what is likely an emotional and stressful time, providing expert independent legal advice for your unique circumstances. Please get in touch with us today to find out more about how we can help you. 

What is a ‘prenup’?

A prenup is a legal contract entered into by a couple prior to getting married or having a civil partnership. The purpose of a prenuptial agreement is to set out how assets, property, debts, and other financial matters will be divided in the event of divorce or dissolution of the partnership.

Prenuptial agreements are particularly common in situations where one or both parties have significant assets or property that they want to protect in the event of a relationship breakdown. They can also be used to clarify financial expectations and responsibilities during the marriage.

Are prenuptial agreements legally binding?

Prenuptial agreements, while not strictly legally binding in the UK, can carry significant weight in legal proceedings. Although courts are not obligated to adhere strictly to the terms of a pre nuptial agreement, they are increasingly taking them into consideration, especially if certain conditions are met. These conditions typically include:

  • Full disclosure: Both parties must fully disclose their assets, liabilities, and financial circumstances before entering into the agreement.
  • Independent legal advice: Each party should seek legal advice before signing the agreement to ensure they understand its implications.
  • No undue influence: The agreement must be entered into voluntarily, without undue pressure or coercion from either party.
  • Fairness: The terms of the agreement should be fair and reasonable at the time it was made and in the circumstances prevailing at the time of divorce or dissolution.

It’s important to note that prenuptial agreements cannot cover issues such as child custody, child support and arrangements for children, as these matters are determined separately based on the best interests of the child at the time of divorce or dissolution.

Challenging a prenuptial agreement

It is possible to challenge a prenuptial agreement during divorce proceedings under certain circumstances. 

A prenup must be willingly and truthfully signed by both parties. As such, if one party signed the agreement while mentally ill or under duress, this provides grounds to contest the agreement during divorce proceedings. 

Additionally, if the agreement was signed less than 21 days before the marriage, this can also constitute grounds for challenge. 

If one party failed to fully disclose their assets, liabilities, or financial circumstances at the time the prenup was created, the other party may contest the agreement on the grounds of non-disclosure.

Similarly, if one party did not have the opportunity to seek independent legal advice before signing the prenup, they may contest the agreement on the basis of lack of legal representation and understanding of its implications.

How can Expert Family Law assist?

If you still have questions regarding challenging a prenuptial agreement, our team can put you in touch with a specialist family law solicitor from our panel who can assist with prenuptial agreements, postnuptial agreements, and other divorce issues, including high net worth divorces.

Please get in touch with us today using the form at the top of the page to find out if a divorce solicitor from our panel could help with your case.

Please note we are not a firm of solicitors. We maintain a panel of trusted and regulated legal experts who provide independent legal advice and assistance on all family law matters. If you contact us in relation to a case, we may pass your case on to a panel firm in return for a fee from our panel firms. We will never charge you for passing on your case to a panel firm.

 

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