September 30, 2011

All you need is love – and a pre-nup!

The recent announcement that Sir Paul McCartney will tie the knot for the third time is not necessarily the most earth shattering news to hit the universe.

The fact that the marriage will go ahead without a pre-nuptial agreement just a few years after the former Beatle’s disastrous split from Heather Mills – which cost him over £24 million – is the factor sparking a media frenzy, and one which has prompted Jones Myers LLP Partner Peter Jones to pen the following:

Dear Paul

It has been wonderful to see your career continue to power from strength to strength.

I am delighted to congratulate you on your impending marriage to Nancy Shevell and wish you both every happiness in your future lives together.          

However, despite the fact that you have known one another for 20 years as friends – and have been dating since 2007 – I, like millions of others, was taken aback by your reported decision to rebuff a pre-nuptial agreement following the traumatic experience with your former wife Heather Mills.

In light of this, I’d like to take this opportunity to highlight the benefits of such agreements in the countdown to you tying the knot.

Pre-nups not only manage expectations, but are also ideal opportunities to agree solutions before problems arise – which can go a long way to avoiding substantial litigation costs.

They can also be a catalyst for openness and frankness among future spouses while helping them to focus on preserving a proportion of assets for future generations.

Many couples who have trodden this path attribute the biggest benefits to the fact that pre-nups can avert potential conflict and trauma by enabling them to dissolve their marriage in a fast and relatively painless manner – avoiding the protracted and emotionally-draining route to court and the associated stresses it brings.

Whilst I hope it never occurs, in the worst case scenario a pre-nuptial agreement may well protect you. 

In the meantime, as the world awaits details of ‘the big day’ which, following the posting of the banns, can be as soon as October 1, you may wish to consider doing a u turn and drawing up a pre-nup before embarking on the long and winding road of marriage.  

Yours sincerely

Peter Jones 

Peter Jones

Founder, Jones Myers LLP