Since the decision by the Supreme Court in 2010 which means that pre-nuptial agreements can now be enforceable, pre-civil partnership agreements are now also enforceable in England and Wales. This means that it is extremely important for any couple entering a civil partnership, especially high net worth individuals, to consider carefully entering a pre-civil partnership agreement to protect their wealth and assets.
A pre-civil partnership agreement can be enforceable through the courts in the unfortunate event of a relationship breakdown, provided it has been entered into in the correct way with the correct legal advice for both parties. This means that both parties now have the autonomy to decide what should happen to their wealth and assets, such as their investments and pensions, upon the event of their relationship breaking down.
If there is no pre-civil partnership agreement when the relationship breaks down the court can decide to split the assets in a way it deems fair, sometimes even taking into account wealth and assets acquired before the civil partnership was entered into to make sure the needs of the other party are met. This means it is extremely important to consider a pre-civil partnership agreement, especially if you are a high net worth individual.
We can help you make sure your assets are protected by providing you with advice from our expert solicitors and can help to draft and enforce your pre-civil partnership agreement. We are also experienced negotiators and can manage those, sometimes difficult, discussions with the other party. We are also here to review your pre-civil partnership agreement to make sure it is still fair throughout your civil partnership, for example if you have a child.
We will advise you on every aspect of your pre-civil partnership agreement to give your agreement the best chance possible of being adopted by the courts and make sure your provisions do not fall into any of the pitfalls which could cause them to conflict with existing law, such as ensuring the pre-civil partnership agreement has future flexibility.
We are specialists in dealing with the international assets of high net worth individuals and can help make sure you protect these important parts of your wealth as well.
We would recommend that you contact us at least six weeks prior to the date of your civil partnership (longer if you have significant overseas assets) so we can ensure that there is enough time for both parties to get independent legal advice and for a mutually acceptable agreement to be entered into.