Ensuring a successful outcome

It used to be the position in England that nothing agreed between a couple could have any impact on the outcome of family court proceedings.  Often such agreements were given no weight whatsoever.

However, thanks to a series of cases leading up to a 2010 Supreme Court decision (Radmacher in October 2010), English law has now developed so that premarital agreements, marital agreements and other family law agreements are given substantial weight.  Quite possibly the terms of an agreement will be followed into an order of the court.

Key points to bear in mind are:

  1. It is important to show that both parties fully understood the implications of entering into an agreement and that it was fair at the time it was entered into and at the time it is enforced, often a time of divorce
  2. Although it is not essential that there should have been independent legal advice and disclosure, this is invariably important to ensure that it is fair and that the parties understood the implications
  3. The choice of forum, the country where proceedings will take place, can be very important

We deal with many cases involving marital agreements entered into abroad and we are very conscious of the different, often lesser, requirements for agreements in many countries.

Although prenuptial agreements have not yet fully entered into English culture, an increasing number of couples are asking for such agreements and we have extensive experience in preparing them for both UK-based and international families.