Prenuptial Agreements: Radmacher Keeps The Loot; Aguilera Probably Will Too
Marry me? Here’s the ring! Divorce, and I get it
back. Sign this prenup please. Yesterday the legitimacy of prenuptial agreements where
given a major boost as the British Supreme court upheld the legitimacy of a
document signed by heiress Katrin Radmacher (worth 160 million pounds) with her
ex-husband, Nicolas Granatino.
This landmark case has set a precedent where divorce laws
can be overruled where a pre-marriage agreement has been signed by a couple
Already lawyers in Britain have noted a doubling in the
past year of demand of people requesting prenuptial agreements.
Is it any wonder given the media coverage of high profile,
celebrity divorces in which questions are raised about the division of
property. Who could forget scratching their heads as Paul McCartney’s
divorce from Heather Mills required him to payout 24.3 million pounds ($48.7
The growth of demand for prenuptial agreement is rising
in the US as well. An American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyer survey highlighted
a 73% annual increase in demand and in particular a rise in women requesting the
For those people emerging from their first marriage the
gloss of building wealth together is worn out. For those couples entering their
second, possibly third marriages they are looking to protect what assets they do own
for themselves. For this group, the kids are gone, the house paid off,
that wealth you own has been built, goal achieved. Why risk having to
part with what assets you have?
Last week saw the latest celebrity split as singer
Christina Aguilera, worth $60 million filed for divorce from Jordan Bratman. The
gossip heralded a collective sigh of relief that she’s signed a prenup.
This is a woman who’s assets where safe.
Yet questions have been raised over whether prenuptial
arrangements are generally in the interest of women. Anita Mackay,
University of Western Sydney, highlighted in her research, “Who Gets a
Better Deal? Women and Prenuptial Agreements in Australia and the USA” the
dangers that women enter these agreements from a inequitable bargaining
position both before and after the marriage with their careers often stalled
with child rearing responsibilities.
Without legal safeguards the risk is the feminisation of poverty.
Around the world it seems our legal systems are moving
towards recognizing and opening the doors for prenuptial agreements, no doubt
promoted by high profile divorces which begin with incredible wealth inequity
between the couple.
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