Maria Scotland, the co-founder and Lead Barrister at Wenup, has provided an insightful legal analysis of post-2010 judgements from the High Court and the Court of Appeal in England and Wales, focusing on nuptial agreements. This review, which encompassed 29 cases, revealed that only 9 upheld the prenuptial agreement (“PNA”) terms, highlighting the critical need for precise and thoughtful drafting of these agreements.
The analysis underscores the importance of adapting to changing circumstances. Many PNAs were not fully upheld because they failed to reflect evolving situations, lacking periodic updates. Wenup addresses this by integrating a review and update mechanism in each PNA, adopting a subscription model to ensure the enduring relevance of their agreements.
Another key aspect affecting PNA effectiveness is the interpretation of “needs.” Maria Scotland’s research emphasises the necessity of defining needs based on individual circumstances, including factors like age, health, capital resources, income, and regional housing cost variations. Wenup eschews arbitrary lump sum settlements in their PNAs, focusing instead on the dynamic nature of individual needs, ensuring that their agreements remain valid through relationship changes.
Wenup’s approach to crafting high-quality PNAs is characterised by its bespoke nature, avoiding a generic solution and instead tailoring each agreement to the specific requirements of each couple.
Significantly, Wenup’s methodology avoids speculative elements in PNAs. Anticipated future events, such as children, additional properties, or business ventures, are deliberately omitted. This recognises the unpredictability of such factors and their potential influence on the agreement’s fairness. Instead, couples are advised to modify their agreements post-event, ensuring certainty and fairness. Thanks to Wenup’s fixed pricing and efficient process, updating a PNA is neither burdensome nor expensive.
In conclusion, Wenup’s approach to nuptial agreements is rooted in adaptability, precision, and a commitment to meeting the real needs of both parties. By incorporating insights from legal history into their practice, Wenup aims to provide couples with resilient, future-ready agreements that can adapt to the complexities of married life.