Partner Michael Gregory analyses the importance of prenuptial agreements in High Net-Worth marriages in The Legal Diary.

Michael’s article was published in The Legal Diary on Friday 9 December, and can be read here.

Pre-nuptial agreements have once again been making the news headlines with the billionaire Michael Fuchs and his wife staging a bitter fight in the High Court in London with regards to a pre-nup they signed back in 2012.

For many with significant assets to protect, entering into a pre-nup before a marriage should be seen as as essential as booking the wedding venue and ordering the cake. As we reported in the Legal Diary in June, as long as the pre-nup is entered into properly before the wedding and certain provisions are adhered to beforehand, then the court should attach significant weight to it if it is ever contested at a later date.

However, for many with wealth to protect that are considering pre-nuptial agreements their major concerns usually ahead of any marriage is that they are wanting to protect the wealth that they already have or that their extended families have.

It is really important though to think ahead to a number of scenarios that may take place in the future and after a wedding has taken place itself to ensure that these eventualities are captured and protected too under the terms of any pre-nup . These scenarios are usually on the radars of those that have significant wealth to protect in the first place but others; it may not necessarily be the case.

My advice is that you should enter into a pre-nup if you have wealth to protect and if you are considering or expecting the following to happen after your wedding has taken place:

  • The restructuring of a business.
  • An impending inheritance.
  • A business owner about to sell their business.
  • A beneficiary of a substantial trust.