Pre-Nuptial and Binding Financial Agreements
In certain circumstances, the courts will be bound by the terms of Pre-nuptial Agreements (Pre-nups) or Binding Financial Agreements (BFAs) following the breakdown of a relationship. Pre-nups are made before a couple starts living together or while they are living together, which may include after marriage. BFAs formalise an agreement between parties about how they want their property to be divided, should the relationship end.
Think of a BFA as an insurance policy or risk management tool. No one hopes their relationship will end, but 40% of marriages fail and this rate only increases in 2nd or subsequent marriages. Pre-nups and BFA’s help to protect you.
For parties thinking about a new relationship, especially if they have experienced a separation and property settlement before, having a pre-nup is reassuring. They are also useful for people who come to the relationship with significant property and who want to protect that property in the event of the end of the relationship. Provision for how property acquired during the relationship is to be divided is also a common feature of these agreements.