The big engagement news of the moment is the announcement that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are to tie the knot. Whilst the press speculates on the date, the dress and the venue, the family lawyers speculate on the pre-nupt!
In Scotland, the starting point is that pre-nuptial agreements (also known as ‘pre-nupts’ or ‘ante nuptial agreements’) are legally binding, provided that the terms are fair and reasonable when the agreement was entered in to, that both parties had the opportunity to obtain separate legal advice, and that there was no element of pressure applied to sign the agreement.
People enter into pre-nuptial agreements for all sorts of reasons. Generally speaking, they are used to ring-fence certain assets to ensure that, in the event of a future separation, these assets do not fall into the matrimonial/civil partnership pot for division between you and your spouse/civil partner. You might be inclined to enter into such an Agreement if you are a business owner, or own properties prior to marriage, or if you have been married before. Equally, you may have savings or investments you wish to protect, or a sum of money which was gifted or inherited by you which you wish to ensure is not available for division with your spouse/civil partner on separation.
Whilst it might not be the easiest conversation to have with your loved one, it is one that should be had sooner rather than later to enable the agreement to be negotiated and finalised in plenty of time before the big day, so that you can both just focus on enjoying it!
The Drummond Miller family team is extremely experienced in dealing with all aspects of family law, including pre-nuptial agreements, separation and divorce. If you would like any further information or advice, please get in touch with our experienced solicitors in Edinburgh, Glasgow, Dalkeith, Dunfermline, Musselburgh and Bathgate.