Prenuptial Agreements

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A prenuptial “revolution” occurred in England and Wales in 2010 since when our highly experienced team has been at the cutting edge of drafting and negotiating “prenups”.  While the harsh reality is that a prenup is usually about wealth preservation, we bring to our work an understanding and willingness to learn from our clients and provide a unique blend of insight on a human level.

The common feature of those seeking advice on prenups is a search for certainty in an uncertain world .  Our clients are typically young couples setting out and those in later life who independently, or with the encouragement of friends, family, shareholders, trustees, lawyers or accountants, seek to reduce the possibility of conflict in the event of their marriage breaking down or protect assets for their children. 

The run up to your wedding can be a stressful time. We will listen to you, discuss your expectations and concerns, and advise you on the advantages and disadvantages of entering into a prenuptial agreement based on your individual set of circumstances. We can then advise on the best approach to drafting and negotiating the terms of the agreement.

Increasingly, collaborative law methods are employed when negotiating prenuptial agreements.  Jane Keir and Charlotte Bradley are collaboratively trained and can discuss this option with you.

Preparing a prenuptial agreement is not just about the law. These agreements often involve wider family members and they necessitate discussions about inheritance and family trusts.  Negotiations need to be delicately and diplomatically handled. We will guide you through the process in a pragmatic yet emotionally sensitive way. Our Private Client team can provide advice on the tax and inheritance implications of your prenup at the same time and can draw up a Will to reflect the terms of the prenuptial agreement.

Those planning a prenuptial agreement are often of a different nationality and/or live abroad. If that is the case, we will draw on our contacts in other countries to ensure clients obtain good advice from foreign lawyers.

Depending on the circumstances, we will be able to do this well in advance of your wedding date so that the prenup can be signed and you can then get on with the more enjoyable aspects of your wedding planning.

Food for thought

  • Never enter in to a prenup thinking that it will not be enforceable.  Although there is no act of parliament in England and Wales making prenups binding, the Courts follow case law and there is now good law to say that a prenup will be binding if there is:-
    • Independent advice under no duress
    • Financial disclosure
    • A decent interval between signing the prenup and the wedding date
  • Consider which country might now or in the future be relevant to your marriage or the financial resources of it.  For example, if your married life will really be spent in Monaco or New York, an English prenup is unlikely to be sufficient and we will need to ensure that the arrangements reflect the laws of wherever you might end up (or prepare a separate agreement which is enforceable abroad).
  • It is all very well having a prenup, but it is sometimes more important for the weaker financial spouse to actually own or have a share in an asset particularly when the assets of the marriage are abroad or in multiple jurisdictions.
  • Remember that things change, particularly if you move abroad, and that no one knows what the effect of a long marriage will have on a prenup entered into today.

Recent examples of work

  • Acting for a high net worth Chinese client in relation to a complex prenuptial agreement with significant international considerations. Working with our private client team, our significant experience of offshore trusts and tax law ensured our client the best possible representation and negotiation position.
  • Acting for a British based gay client in a prenuptial agreement, before his marriage to his long term partner (living in Germany).  Protecting our client’s assets and agreeing sensible provision for the partner in the event of divorce, giving the prenuptial agreement the highest possibility of being enforced
  • Acting for a London based French banker in a prenuptial agreement in England and liaising with French lawyers to mirror the position in France.  Protecting our client in England and in France and providing certainty in the event of a divorce


"It's a team that has a great breadth of experience across the board and particularly in international cases."

Chambers UK, A Client's Guide to the UK Legal Profession

"I always think of them as having a Rolls-Royce service but they are particularly good when there's a European element to the case."

Chambers UK, A Client's Guide to the UK Legal Profession

"Very strong litigation practice, with some of the best up-and-coming stars of tomorrow"

Legal 500 UK

"A standout firm"

Legal 500 UK

"Professional yet sympathetic manner and the team always fights hard to defend your interests"

Chambers UK, A Client's Guide to the UK Legal Profession


If you require further information or advice from our team of specialist family lawyers, please contact a member of our team or call us on +44 (0)20 7814 1200.

"They made a very difficult time much easier to deal with. Their professionalism kept me sane and focused on the outcome I needed"


"It's a team that has a great breadth of experience across the board and particularly in international cases"

Chambers UK, A Client's Guide to the UK Legal Profession

"All have been excellent and have shown great diligence and practicality, along with sensitivity during a very difficult time in my life"


"Rolls-Royce service and particularly good when there's a European element to the case"

Chambers UK, A Client's Guide to the UK Legal Profession

"A standout firm"

Legal 500 UK

"Professional yet sympathetic manner and the team always fights hard to defend your interests"

Chambers UK, A Client's Guide to the UK Legal Profession

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