Wealth protection: the use of pre-nuptial agreements in international cases
The International Family Offices Journal
Vol. 1 - Iss. 4 pp. 23–27
The field of marital agreements is often rather murky. They are not always enforced by a particular jurisdiction, which makes planning quite tricky. This article is by some of the leaders in this field, who have represented divorcing clients in cases that have changed the law in England. The authors explain the changing approaches, and offer extremely helpful advice for clients concerned about protecting their wealth in the event of a hostile divorce. Given the lack of certainty in enforceability, their excellent ?cutting edge' advice on how to ensure that - as far as possible - the parties' jurisdictional wishes are respected is to employ ?shadow agreements'. For example, if a Swedish couple living in England want a nuptial agreement to ensure that any divorce would be governed by Swedish law, they would arrange for a ?primary' Swedish agreement, and then draft an English ?shadow' agreement to carefully demonstrate that the parties have been advised of their rights in English law and entered into the main Swedish contract regardless. They promote considering this practice for any international clients who are considering marrying, or who are moving to a different country during the marriage.