How Long Before the Marriage Ceremony Does the Prenuptial Agreement Need to be Signed?
There’s significant debate among family law solicitors when a prenuptial agreement needs to be signed. Some firms say 21 days before the wedding and others say 28 days. So what’s the answer?
A major concern around prenuptial agreements is that they apply pressure to one or both partners prior to a wedding.
On 27 February 2014, the Law Commission made recommendations in its report called the Matrimonial Property, Needs and Agreements project that specifically recommended prenuptial agreements are signed 28 days before the marriage ceremony. The reason behind this was to reduce the possibility that one party pressured the other into signing, or felt pressure that they themselves must sign the agreement, due to the imminent wedding.
The legality of prenuptial agreements in England and Wales remains debatable. If both sides demonstrate they had sufficient time to review the agreement, family judges are more likely to uphold their contents. This time is considered to be 28 days before the wedding.
What Are the Concerns When Signing a Prenuptial Agreement?
Weddings and the final run-up to the ceremony itself can be an emotional roller coaster. Our family law solicitors prioritise ensuring your judgement is not adversely affected by emotional pressure from any source – including yourself.
It’s important not to view a prenuptial agreement as another piece of wedding admin. Some clients feel compelled to sign a prenuptial agreement so they can move on to other wedding preparations.
Others worry about the embarrassment of postponing the wedding because the agreement isn’t signed in time. And the costs. This is understandable given the time it takes to painstakingly plan your big day. However, you must get legal advice when signing a prenuptial agreement to ensure you understand its ramifications, and that it’s fair on both partners.
Why Choose Our Family Solicitors in Brighton and Hove?
Our family law solicitors in Brighton and Hove take immense pride in drawing up prenuptial agreements that take into account:
- Intangible assets such as creative portfolios and future inheritances
- Any businesses owned by either partner
- Outstanding debts owed by either partner
- Children from previous relationships that the parent wants to protect and provide for
- Assets that are difficult to share between both partners
We ensure you have sufficient time to undertake disclosure and will give advice throughout the drafting and signing of the agreement. We also require that your partner receives independent legal advice from another solicitor so that they understand the contents of the agreement.
Our family law solicitors have dealt with complicated cases which can take months to negotiate. If either partner has overseas assets, we will liaise with solicitors and experts in those other countries on your behalf.
Alternatively, if you have had a prenuptial agreement drawn up by another solicitor who didn’t follow the 28-day time limit, we can help with professional negligence claims.
Our fixed fee consultations cost £90 plus VAT so we can understand your requirements. Costs for prenuptial agreements begin from £1,800 plus VAT, depending on the complexity involved.
If you would like to speak to one of our family law solicitors in Brighton and Hove, please call us on 01273 726951 or click the contact us section of the website.