Pre-nuptial agreements can be a sensible option for some couples who are looking to protect an asset acquired before marriage, protect contribution from their parents, or provide financial protection for children from a former relationship. The agreements are made before marriage and, whilst historically the English Courts have not given much weight to them, this is changing so long as it is a clear document, both parties have sought independent legal advice and have disclosed their assets to one another.
Post-nuptial agreements are made after marriage, and can be made to reiterate the pre-nuptial agreement to give it additional weight. They can also be used by couples who have separated and then reconciled. As with pre-nuptial agreements, they are not legally binding, however, the Court would give some weight to these agreements if the correct procedure is followed.
A cohabitation, or living together agreement, allows you to establish the responsibilities of each party and what rights they have. They can be particularly useful if a property is being purchased in one person’s name only. It can include the shares of the property, how rent/mortgage should be paid, how bills can be split, and what happens to the property on relationship breakdown. It can also be useful if there are children of the relationship as it can address what will happen to the children in the event of relationship breakdown.