Prenuptial agreements or "prenups" are a common legal step taken before marriage

Pre nup agreement or binding financial agreement, as it is known under the Family Law Act is made between parties prior to their marriage. The agreement will usually provide how the parties propose to operate in respect of financial matters, as well as often providing what should occur in the event of the marriage breaking down including how specific assets are to be divided.

While prenuptial agreements are commonly heard of among the rich, the contracts can be created for anyone who has assets they feel the need to protect in the event of divorce or their death.

Pre Nuptial Agreemenet (Financial binding agreement Section 90B of the Family Law Act 1975)

(1) If:

(a) people who are contemplating entering into a marriage with each other make a written agreement with respect to any of the matters mentioned in subsection (2); and

(aa) at the time of the making of the agreement, the people are not the spouse parties to any other binding agreement (whether made under this section or section 90C or 90D) with respect to any of those matters; and

(b) the agreement is expressed to be made under this section;

the agreement is a financial agreement . The people may make the financial agreement with one or more other people.

(2) The matters referred to in paragraph (1)(a) are the following:

(a) how, in the event of the breakdown of the marriage, all or any of the property or financial resources of either or both of the spouse parties at the time when the agreement is made, or at a later time and before divorce, is to be dealt with;

(b) the maintenance of either of the spouse parties:

(i) during the marriage; or

(ii) after divorce; or

(iii) both during the marriage and after divorce.

(3) A financial agreement made as mentioned in subsection (1) may also contain:

(a) matters incidental or ancillary to those mentioned in subsection (2); and

(b) other matters.

(4) A financial agreement (the new agreement ) made as mentioned in subsection (1) may terminate a previous financial agreement (however made) if all of the parties to the previous agreement are parties to the new agreement.