Asset protection can take many forms. It can be motivated by a wish to avoid or defer a capital tax charge, an intention to provide for family members, or a desire to safeguard personal wealth in the event of a divorce or separation.
Increasingly, pre- and post-nuptial agreements are used in order to help safeguard a married couple's assets should they divorce. Cohabitation agreements are also becoming more and more common for non-married couples who wish to live together but protect their wealth should they separate.
Pre-nuptial agreements make sense for everyone to consider; even in relationships without significantly valuable assets to cover, an agreement can significantly lower legal adviser and court costs should the relationship breakdown.
Wrigleys can prepare and advise in depth on all of these, as well as any relevant tax considerations.
Further advice on asset protection generally can be found here
Even when a couple is already married or in a civil partnership, post-marital agreements can be extremely useful for setting out what assets each party should receive if the relationship should come to an end.
Similarly to a pre-nuptial agreement, the ‘pre-marriage’ assets are set out, alongside any assets acquired during the marriage, and an agreement is reached as to what should happen to them.
Sometimes post-nuptial agreements can focus on specific assets, such as a family inheritance which one party wants to protect, or perhaps where one party is being brought into a family business, so as to set out the position for them and their spouse in the case of a divorce. In this way, the agreements can be used as part of the wider family’s wealth and estate planning too.
Whatever the family situation, preparing a pre-nuptial or post-nuptial agreement can help to keep any separation as amicable and straightforward as is possible, helping to reduce the legal costs associated with a protracted dispute. We appreciate that every relationship is different, and so ensure that all agreements are tailored to the particular circumstances of every couple we advise.
Of Marie-Louise Hamilton: "I rate her very highly - she is very much an expert in the field."
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