1. Should I get a pre-nup? Prince William and Prince Charles famously did not, so it seems unlikely that Princess Eugenie will. But if you don’t have a royal establishment to protect your assets, it’s worth a moment’s consideration. Rather than thinking of this as a depressing ‘what if we get divorced’ conversation, think of it as a way of controlling your financial future privately, as a couple, instead of leaving it up to the courts. It’s a way of deciding what will happen to pre-marriage assets if you have children. It’s also easy - pre-nups can be arranged online from about £200. A more normal fee from a solicitor would be in the region of £900 which may be small beer compared to the risk of it going pear-shaped.
2. How will we arrange our finances as a married couple? If both of you have separate bank accounts pre-marriage, neither of you get access to the other’s account once you’ve tied the knot unless you change to a joint one. If you choose a joint account, the money is fair game in the event of a separation regardless of how much each partner pays in. So, it’s worth considering how you’d like to set up your accounts once you’re married.
3. How much do we need to save? Saving for the wedding is unlikely to be an issue for Princess Eugenie and her affianced, but if you need to squirrel away a bit, consider a savings app. It’s easier to save now than it’s ever been. We’ve done a blog post about the best ones here.
4. What if I have debt? Does your partner know? If not, it’s time to come clean. Any debt in your name is yours alone, regardless of marriage, unless you have a guarantor (someone who will take responsibility for the debt if you’re unable to pay). Your new spouse has no legal obligation to pay a debt if it is held in only your name. There are a few exceptions to this, so if you do have debt or if you have a poor credit rating, it’s worth discussing with a financial advisor in advance how you and your partner want to handle it. Having poor credit can affect anybody who is ‘financially linked’ to you, including your husband or wife.
5. How do I change my next of kin once we're married? If you want your spouse to be your next of kin, it’s worth getting and filling out a ‘next of kin card’. You can download one free here. There isn’t actually a law in the UK which defines next of kin, so this makes things absolutely clear.
If you'd like more information or have a question about planning your finances before you get married, you can ask Holly here.