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Talk to me about prenups

(73 Posts)
runningonemptyfulloflove Tue 06-Oct-20 09:02:23

I know it's a very American concept and a bit negative (in terms of happily ever after wedding) but iv seen too many friends or relatives get divorced, things turn nasty and personal and it turns into a right mess and very expensive solicitor fees.
I just want some basic things laid out before we get married. I'm currently working part time without a brilliant salary while we have young children, so depend on OH for the vast majority of bills. I don't want to be left completely penniless if we were ever to divorce, when we made the decision as a couple for me to focus more on children than career ladder and he would provide.

Has anyone any experience of UK prenups?

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Opentooffers Tue 06-Oct-20 09:26:57

Lol, it's more in his interest to get a prenup, usually it's to protect your assets, but it sounds like he is the one with the assets so you really don't need it. What you do need is marriage as protection, you are wide open for being shafted at present if you split, it's good that wants to marry you. If I was him I'd wonder at you suggesting the prenup, it's usually the one with the assets that does this as they don't want to lose them - it's not binding anyway in UK, so just marry him, it's the best way.

Kallistova Tue 06-Oct-20 12:22:19

I'm not from the UK, but in my opinion prenups are a must. Divorces are sadly way too common, so I really don't understand why people don't prepare for various worst case scenarios prior to getting married. I come from a family of lawyers so I have always been very aware of how ugly, messy and unfair divorces can get...

indianaJames Tue 06-Oct-20 19:35:06

I don't think prenups are particularly legally binding in the UK. Could be wrong. A friend asked for some legal advice on this before getting married and the response was it was a bit of paper. The whole point of marriage is that it's 50/50 so muddying the waters with prenups seems a contradiction.
Although in reality lots of marriages end in divorce so it seems sensible

Dacquoise Tue 06-Oct-20 20:00:07

Really not sure @runningonemptyfulloflove how your intended would view your idea of a prenup in your situation. They are becoming more common in the UK and taken into consideration on divorce. It would need to be drawn up and agreed by independent solicitors for borh parties. They also need to be reviewed every five years as UK divorce law deals very differently financially with short and longer marriages. However your vulnerability lies in having children without marriage as currently you have little recourse to 'family' assets in your situation. Hopefully you are on the deeds to any property or have assets in your own right?Your husband to be is responsible for child maintenance only currently. Any solicitor acting on his behalf would advise him against marriage so you may be better off not pursuing this. After marriage your rights to assets are assured and cohabitation pre marriage can be taken into consideration.

jdoejnr1 Tue 06-Oct-20 20:04:53

If you start talking prenuptials and he seeks legal advice its likely that you won't be getting married. They're usually there to protect the ones with the money not the ones who want the money.

runningonemptyfulloflove Tue 06-Oct-20 23:10:42

@Opentooffers you really shouldn't comment on things you have no knowledge of! Prenups are not to "protect your assets" prenups are an agreement of how you plan to split things should you sadly get divorced. Divorce often gets quite messy, bitter and a case of everyone trying to get one over on eachother. So even though my OH does currently have more assets, it's in my interest to get him to agree to what I'd be entitled to, now, when we are in a happy loving place and I feel he would be fair, not not when we could potentially be, in a very bitter unhappy place. Thanks for your opinion though ...

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runningonemptyfulloflove Tue 06-Oct-20 23:15:15

@Dacquoise thank you for your advise. Your right I'm currently wide open. Luckily my OH is very fair (currently, however sadly as we all see too often things change during a divorce) and he sees my sacrifice in work to raise are children as far more important than his "bread winning" so he is more than happy to get a prenup. I think sometimes they are misunderstood as a way for the wealthy party to "protect all assets", really they are a way for all parties to agree what would be best going forward should the worst happen, to avoid expensive messy divorces later.

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runningonemptyfulloflove Tue 06-Oct-20 23:20:52

@jdoejnr1 that's such a sad way to look at things! Me and my OH have spoken about prenups a lot and what our plan would be, it doesn't effect his want to marry me thankfully. If it did it wouldn't be something I'd want to enter into. Thankfully he does see that we chose as a couple to have children, we chose as a couple that I should be the one to take a career brake and stay at home with them more, and we chose as a couple for him to peruse the career ladder in the mean time. So we chose as a couple how we would want to split things going forward if sadly things didn't go as we hope and intend.

This thread has really opened my eyes to how woman view their sacrifices in raising children. It seems too many think they have given up all power over their own future and should just be grateful a man still wants to marry them and might throw a few pound there way 😔

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Stuffythedragon Tue 06-Oct-20 23:26:49

I may be way off here, but the fact you are thinking about how your ‘divorce’ would affect you, makes me wonder if you should actually be thinking about marriage at all.

I’m all for protecting me and mine, but I’m not sure a prenup would be on my mind unless I was a multi-millionaire.

Happy to be disagreed with obviously... 💁🏻‍♀️

Brot64 Tue 06-Oct-20 23:34:57

Prenups are at the courts discretion in the UK and there's absolutely nothing wrong with wanting to protect yourself, so many nasty disputes would be avoided during divorces if the UK recognised prenups more often. I had a prenup for my first marriage and also have one now too for my second, although both marriages were in the US. We did get the agreement notarised here so if anything were to happen we both know what we will be entitled to. There's absolutely no way I would get married without one.

runningonemptyfulloflove Tue 06-Oct-20 23:39:25

@Stuffythedragon I kind of see that like someone saying "why look after your liver unless you plan on getting liver cancer"? I love my OH dearly, he's a good man, but Iv seen to many people (including my own parents) get divorced and it's all. With nasty. I don't think anyone stand up there saying "I do" while planning to end it a few years later, but reality is in the UK something like 50% of marriages do end that way. Just look at mumsnet, how many people are having affairs. 😔

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runningonemptyfulloflove Tue 06-Oct-20 23:41:06

@Brot64 thank you. I agree it's silly to marry without one, UK seems so far behind in this thinking though. Just look at this thread 🙄 It's like have house insurance, I don't plan on my house burning down, doesn't mean I don't want to have a back up if it does though!

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BewilderedDoughnut Tue 06-Oct-20 23:46:04

Lol, it's more in his interest to get a prenup

Agreed. He should get one. He stands to lose a lot more than you OP.

runningonemptyfulloflove Tue 06-Oct-20 23:52:00

@BewilderedDoughnut why do you say that? What makes you think what he earns now is all "his", we decided as a couple to have babies and for me to be the one who stayed at home with them.
So should he just get the best of both worlds? Children, free child care and all his "assets". Have I been transported back to the 1950's? I'm not asking for anything I don't deserve. I don't want to leave him skint and me rich, just for us to be fair. I worked hard at university, got a good job, well paid, we decided as a couple to have children and we decided as a couple we didn't want them in nursery full time and that I'd be at home. This thread has totally shocked me! It's like woman have no value over their contributions to the table of marriage.

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Turniptracker Tue 06-Oct-20 23:52:19

Just done one actually. Had to be signed 28 days or more before the wedding. You can be represented by the same lawyer or different lawyers (we were both very happy with what we had agreed before we went into the prenup so saved some money being represented by the same person). Lawyer also signed a statement to say she believed neither of us was being pressured or coerced into signing. It was very easy and took 1 zoom meeting and a couple of emails to sort

whoopma Tue 06-Oct-20 23:55:13

Courts here take into account pre nups but they aren't legally binding & have to be considered reasonable eg if your pre nup said you would get 100k but your partner was a multi millionaire that wouldn't be deemed reasonable.

Does your DH have significant assets? If neither of you do it then I don't really see the point.

runningonemptyfulloflove Tue 06-Oct-20 23:55:48

@Turniptracker THANK YOU someone actually shedding some light rather than a bunch of people telling me to just shut up and marry him, acting like I'm lucky he's even considering it now I'm penniless and weighed down with (his) children.
It just seems like a sensible thing to think about when we are happy to discuss openly and honestly, rather than potentially down the line when one or both of us could be in a bitter place.
I pray we never need it and we work hard at our (already long term) relationship as it is. But I wouldn't buy a house without house insurance 🤷🏼‍♀️

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BewilderedDoughnut Tue 06-Oct-20 23:56:25

@runningonemptyfulloflove have read of some of the other threads on here and see how many ‘we decided I’d stay home’ situations work out in the woman’s favour.

You’re choosing to live like it’s the 1950s so yes he has the best of both worlds while you will likely make the most sacrifices in addition to taking on the bulk of the responsibilities.

Icanflyhigh Tue 06-Oct-20 23:57:28

I've been talking about this with DP tonight, as he has just purchased a business with his partner, but its no business of mine, and therefore I would have no claim on it in the future.
Everything with us is split 50/50 in terms of mortgage and bills and everything else so the way I see it, the business is solely his - I had no input financially

Summerhillsquare Tue 06-Oct-20 23:57:43

What is it you think you're protecting in the event of a divorce OP?

whoopma Wed 07-Oct-20 00:00:10

Of course it's sensible to protect yourself if you are going to give up work but if you divorcing & were the primary caregiver the settlement would likely be a 60-70 split of equity, pensions etc so I'm not sure what extra provision a pre nup would give you.

timeisnotaline Wed 07-Oct-20 00:02:23

i wouldn’t buy a house without house insurance. Well, I and I suspect other readers wouldn’t have children without being married. To be fair op, the particularly odd bit with you is you have had children and given up the income security with zero rights to your dps assets. NOW you’re talking about getting married with the added protection that brings for the one who gives up income for family reasons and you are telling us you will only do that with suitable additional legal protection. It does seem backward - out in the desert without suitable gear, someone is throwing you a pack and hat and you’re like Hmm what’s in it? I only eat dairy milk and it had better be vitamin water not the plain stuff, not taking it if it’s not the right stuff.

runningonemptyfulloflove Wed 07-Oct-20 00:03:12

@BewilderedDoughnut that's exactly why prenups are important! Your dismissing your own argument. We have agreed that I'd drop to part time hours in a less demanding job, and so I want that in righting signed and witnessed by a solicitor so that should the worst happen and we do get divorced, he can't go back and say "I never wanted that", like apparently so many men do.

I'm not living like it's the 1950's. Wanting to spend time raising your children isn't a 1950s ideal. If a man chose to do it today, I'm sure you'd all think it was wonderful and how very modern he was. Thinking if one parent wants to do that, and the other is happy to continue at work and be main bread winner, that shouldn't then effect the finances of one more than the other in the future, appears to be very forward thinking judging by some of these responses 🙄.

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PegasusReturns Wed 07-Oct-20 00:03:36

A prenup is really designed to protect assets, as other posters have explained.

Getting married is what protects the lower earner.

In the circumstances you’ve described you don’t need a pre nup.

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