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Pre-Partnership Agreements


Pre Partnership Agreements
The Civil Partnership Act 2004 awarded gay and lesbian couples legal recognition of their partnership. A pre-partnership agreement is the civil partnership equivalent of a prenuptial agreement. The benefits of forming a pre-partnership agreement are far reaching. Certainly not all partnerships will last the distance and when civil partnership dissolution is considered, it can be reassuring to know that you have done all you can to protect your personal assets.


Although you may be reluctant to suggest a pre-partnership agreement before your civil partnership has even been formed, we believe, just like prenuptial agreements, that they will become more popular and that the courts will pay more attention to them. So, if you are entering into a civil partnership with your own personal assets, especially if you have children or considerably more assets than your partner, consider the benefits of a pre partnership agreement.


How do pre-partnership agreements work?
A pre-partnership agreement is a written contract agreed by both parties prior to a civil partnership. The contract sets out exactly how any personal and joint assets will be divided in the event of a dissolution.


A pre-partnership agreement, just like a prenuptial agreement, is not yet a legally enforceable contract, unlike in many other countries. As a result courts in England and Wales don't have to follow the pre-partnership agreement. However recent cases have shown a shift towards courts taking prenuptial agreements increasingly into account – pre-partnership agreements are likely to follow suit.


When making a pre-partnership agreement it is advisable for both parties to seek independent legal advice, preferably from an experienced civil partnership solicitor, to ensure both that they are being treated fairly and to maximise the chance of the agreement being taken into account by any future court in dividing a couple’s assets.


Do I need a solicitor to draft my pre partnership agreement?
As a pre partnership agreement is not a legally binding contract, DIY options are available. However this can be a dangerous choice to make – many DIY prenuptial agreements have been completely disregarded and as a result on occasion, one party has been forced to give over 50% of their personal assets plus a proportion of their future income to the other party. In light of this, it is sensible to instruct an experienced civil partnership solicitor to draft your agreement for you – this will help ensure its validity at court.


Thinking of a Pre-Partnership Agreement? Contact us today
For FREE initial phone advice about how Civil Partnership Solicitors can help you with your Pre-Partnership Agreement:

  • call us on 0800 1404544 or
  • use the contact form below:
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Civil Partnership Solicitor – UK Solicitors specialising in preparing Pre-Partnership Agreements for gay and lesbian couples
Bonallack & Bishop Solicitors (76483) – authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority



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