In practice: Conflicting views

Chrissie Cuming Walters highlights the dichotomy of modern family law on financial provision: autonomy versus paternalism ‘The fairness of provision in any nuptial agreement entered into is likely to erode over time and potentially be subsumed by changing circumstances through the passage of time, allowing for an increased use of paternalism.’ Many practitioners would agree …
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Pre-nups and private client: Take note

Mark Pawlowski considers a recent decision on the enforceability of pre-nuptial agreements ‘It was essential that both parties should have entered into the agreement of their own free will without undue influence, fraud or misrepresentation, and with a full appreciation of its implications.’ The recent Court of Appeal decision in Versteegh v Versteegh [2018] has …
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KA v MA
 Neutral citation: [2018] EWHC 499 (Fam)

Wills & Trusts Law Reports | Spring 2018 #171

When the parties met in July 2000, they had both been previously married. In the husband’s case, a difficult divorce caused him to set his face against remarriage. He had three sons who spent significant periods of time with their father in a substantial property near Reading (Property G) which had a value of £3.35m. He (together with his brother) had a successful business in international travel and tourism, owning 51% of the shares in the company valued at £30m. The wife, who had no children, had two rented properties with a combined equity of £245,615. By the time she moved into Prope...

Marital Agreements: A state of uncertainty

Deborah Levy analyses the approach to a marital agreement where needs and conduct were in issue ‘If a prenuptial agreement deals with these matters in a way that a court might adopt then there should be no difficulty with giving effect to the agreement.’The latest figures from the Office for National Statistics showed that in …
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Pre-Nuptial Agreements: Turning of the tide

Suzanne Todd and Luca Del Panta examine the future of pre-nups in the light of the Law Commission’s report ‘“Needs” in the context of a pre-nuptial agreement can be significantly less than they would otherwise be. But where the guillotine falls in any given case is intensely fact-specific.’ When, in October 2010, the Supreme Court …
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Prest v Petrodel Resources Ltd & ors [2013] UKSC 34

Wills & Trusts Law Reports | September 2013 #132

Michael Prest (husband) and Yasmin Prest (wife) were married for 15 years and had four children before the wife petitioned for divorce in March 2008. During the marriage the matrimonial home was in England, though for most of the time the husband was found to be resident in Monaco and there was also a second home in Nevis. Petrodel Resources Ltd (PRL), which was incorporated in the Isle of Man, was the legal owner of the matrimonial home and five other residential properties in the United Kingdom. PRL was part of a group of companies, one of which was the legal owner of two more resident...

AC v DC & ors [2012] EWHC 2032 (Fam)

Wills & Trusts Law Reports | June 2013 #130

Mostyn J granted an application by the applicant (W) to set aside transactions pursuant to s37(2) of the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 that had been made by the first respondent (H) on about 2 December 2010 by which H disposed of his 86.4% shareholding in D Holdings Limited (DH). None of the respondents opposed the application. There was an issue whether or not the effect of the order operated retrospectively for all purposes, including fiscal purposes. Judgment was reserved and further written submissions were invited to determine whether the order setting aside the transact...

Marital Agreements: Creating certainty

Lorraine Harvey assesses the courts’ approach and best practice when advising on pre-nuptial agreements As a rule of best practice, any serious attempt at a binding pre-nuptial agreement ought to be executed at least 21 days prior to the marriage. In recent years there has been a sharp rise in the number of couples entering …
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Family And Trusts: For richer, for poorer

Judith Millar and John Darnton guide the private client adviser through the minefield of cross-border pre-nups Although decisive weight may now be given to a pre-nuptial agreement, there is still a weighing exercise, involving judicial discretion, under s25 Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 and the outcome of that process can never be guaranteed. While private client …
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International Focus: Close comparison

In the conclusion to a two-part analysis Hannah Minty and Sally Nash compare the differences in practice between financial provision in England and Wales and in Scotland ‘In Scotland, inherited assets are specifically excluded from the definition of matrimonial property, and therefore are not taken into account in determining entitlement to financial provision.’ Part one …
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