We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue to use this site we will assume that you agree to our Privacy Policy

/ 06 Sep 2023

Can you challenge or renegotiate a prenuptial agreement in the UK?

Britney Spears has once again been in the news recently with her now ex Sam Asghari allegedly asking to renegotiate/ challenge his prenuptial agreement with Britney Spears.

Family & divorce Lawyers Liz Francis and Hazel Kent takes a closer look at pre-nuptial agreements and whether a challenge like Asghari’s would be possible in the UK.

Hazel Kent


Family & Divorce

View profile
Liz Francis


View profile

“Lifestyle of the rich and famous, you want a piece of me”

Prior to their June 2022 nuptials, Britney Spears is said to have had her husband, Sam Asghari, sign an iron-clad pre-nuptial agreement to protect her estimated $60 million fortune. However, following the filing of Asghari’s divorce application, news outlets have recently reported that Asghari has requested that Spears pay him more than their prenuptial agreement provided and renegotiate the terms.

What is a prenuptial agreement?

Prenuptial agreements used to be the preserve of the uber wealthy or those from other countries where such agreement have long been a mainstream event. However, in recent years they have slowly but surely gained ground in England and Wales and case law shows that they are increasingly upheld wholly or partly by the family courts on marriage breakdown.

The idea of a pre nuptial agreement is that prevention is better than cure- resolve your finances and assets now so that you can avoid disputes should the marriage breakdown. However it is still the case here that the court’s jurisdiction cannot be ousted and at present any party can still apply to the family court for financial remedies despite any pre-nuptial agreement and can ask the court to depart from any agreement.

How can you challenge or renegotiate a prenup?

In England and Wales the court must look at a range of factors when considering a party’s claims to financial redistribution on divorce. Those factors include the income, earning capacity, property and financial resources each spouse has or is likely to have in the future, as well as looking at each party’s needs and responsibilities, now and in the future.

The court will also consider all the circumstances of the case including any pre nuptial agreement. When it comes to the prenuptial agreement specifically the court will consider 5 key aspects:

  • whether both parties understood the implications of the prenuptial agreement
  • whether the prenuptial agreement is fair
  • whether the prenuptial agreement was freely entered into
  • whether the prenuptial agreement was made at least 28 days before the marriage and
  • that both parties received independent legal advice.

It is thought that people should have the freedom to enter into their own agreements and that the court should respect them and uphold them. However, it is of course incredibly hard to predict the future and what may seem reasonable just before marriage can transpire to be increasingly unreasonable and unfair in future years.

The court are very likely however to uphold agreement if they meet certain criteria and given the short duration of Spears’ marriage to Asghari, if determined in the England and Wales, Asghari may be on sticky ground.

How can our divorce lawyers help you?

Our team at Hanne & Co are specialists in pre and post nuptial agreements and are able to assist in tailoring your agreement in line with your individual circumstances and wishes.

Get in touch
Call us on +44 20 7228 0017