We all know that the choice of wedding venue can make or break the big day. Until now there have been fairly strict restrictions on where couples can marry and what form a civil wedding ceremony can take. As the Law Commission announces a project to consider relaxing rules on where and how couples can marry we consider a few other things – aside from location – that those about to tie the knot should consider.

What Is The Weddings Project?

The consensus is that the current rules on weddings aren’t fit for purpose. They date from 1836. Government and the Law Commission fear they simply don’t meet the needs of many modern couples. They’ve just announced The Weddings Project, a two-year consultation project examining how the law can be updated. At present:

  • Weddings can only be held in certain buildings
  • Most ceremonies must follow a set form of words
  • The law is unclear about the legal force of a wedding that hasn’t been celebrated in a legally authorised way

The aim of the project is to remove some of the red tape currently associated with getting married. The suggested reforms follow recent momentous changes in family law, including the introduction of no-fault divorce.

Getting Married? Things To Consider – Prenups

As international divorce lawyers based in London, Brookman Solicitors predominantly advises on issues that arise during a marriage. However a considerable proportion of our work consists of advising individuals who are about to get married on the legal consequences of marriage. We take them through the steps they should consider to protect their legal position in the future should unexpected events arise.

Above all, it’s sensible to consider a prenuptial agreement, now generally enforceable in England and Wales provided certain conditions are met. These conditions include the requirement that both parties to the upcoming marriage receive separate, independent advice on the terms of any agreement. In addition the prenup should be executed well in advance of the wedding ceremony to avoid any suggestion of undue influence that might invalidate the agreement.

What Do I Put In A Prenuptial Agreement?

The contents of a prenup are essentially down to you.  The agreement can cover as much or as little as you like. As a minimum there should be a comprehensive list of each side’s assets and an expression of what should happen to these in the event of a divorce.

You can also set out what financial support should be put in place for children in the event of a break up of the marriage. This is likely to be particularly relevant of there are children from a previous marriage on either side. It’s important to remember however that a court is unlikely to approve any provisions that are harmful to children or not in their best interests.

In the past there was a feeling that prenups were somehow unromantic and inappropriate. With the increasing prevalence of these agreements and their recognition by the courts couples are less reluctant to enter prenups than might have been the case previously.

If you are getting married and would like more information about prenuptial agreements call us on 44 (0) 20 7430 8470 or contact us online.

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