Prenups: Do I need one?
Published 15 May 2017
For many people, the word 'prenup' brings to mind images of movie stars, millionaires and trust-fund beneficiaries; it doesn't seem like a step the average person should take before tying the knot. However, it's becoming increasingly common to draft a prenuptial agreement with your significant other, just to protect you both in case things don't work out.
If you are getting married soon and think getting a prenup would be a good idea, speak with a Parramatta family lawyer to discuss your options and ensure the agreement you've made is legally binding. Here are a few things to take a look at first.
Should I get a prenup?
The reason many couples elect to draft a prenup is because one (or both) of them owns a significant amount of property, money or assets they had before getting married. This doesn't mean, though, that you must be abnormally wealthy to get one - some couples enter prenuptial agreements over seemingly nonessential things, such as who would get the dog or a certain family heirloom. If you have assets you wish to retain in a possible divorce, laying the legal groundwork with a lawyer before you're married would be sensible.
De facto relationships
Though they don't require any signatures or ceremonies, de facto relationships in NSW are actually viewed almost identically to marriages, at least in a legal sense. This means you and your partner of at least two years have the right and ability to draft a 'binding financial agreement' (which is the equivalent of a prenup) if you are so inclined. In many cases, this is a smart move since there tends to be a legal grey area with de facto relationships. Without a written agreement, any type of property division could potentially lead to an ugly court battle.
The idea of presenting your loved one with a written contract stipulating what would happen in a 'worst case' scenario might seem inappropriate, especially as you're planning your wedding. However, when compared to the cost and strain of a full-blown legal battle over assets, the annoyance of drafting a prenup (unromantic as it might be) is a small price to pay.
If you are considering entering this type of financial agreement with your betrothed, you'll need the help of a family law professional - one of our lawyers at Malouf Solicitors would be happy to help you draft a prenup that will protect you in case of divorce.
Please call us on 02 8833 2000 to speak with a lawyer
I remain extremely grateful for Maloufs legal representation related to my financial management of the estate of my brother and for your continuing help and advice in this matter. As an aside, I always recommend Maloufs to my friends and family members who are seeking the best legal representation - only last week, I strongly advised a close family friend that their best interests would be served by arranging an appointment at your Parramatta offices.
John of Parramatta NSW