Trusts—variation of a nuptial settlement
Produced in partnership with Rebecca Dziobon of Penningtons Manches Cooper
Trusts—variation of a nuptial settlement

The following Family practice note produced in partnership with Rebecca Dziobon of Penningtons Manches Cooper provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Trusts—variation of a nuptial settlement
  • What is a nuptial settlement?
  • Legislative provisions and examples
  • Case law
  • The court's powers
  • Procedure
  • Variation of international trusts
  • Impact of Prest v Petrodel Resources

Trusts—variation of a nuptial settlement

A nuptial settlement is a settlement for the benefit of one or both of the parties or their children, created because of the marriage, or referring to the marriage, whether made before or after the marriage. The court has a statutory power to vary a trust that is a nuptial settlement under section 24(1)(c) of the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 (MCA 1973). There are equivalent provisions in Schedule 5, paragraphs 6–7 to the Civil Partnership Act 2004 (CPA 2004). The court can make a variation of settlement order following divorce, dissolution, judicial separation and nullity proceedings. It can also order the variation of a nuptial settlement to provide financial relief following an overseas divorce under Part III of the Matrimonial and Family Proceedings Act 1984 (MFPA 1984); MFPA 1984, s 16(2) sets out the factors to which the court will have regard (see Practice Note: Financial relief after overseas divorce—jurisdiction and legislative provisions). A variation of settlement order is a species of property adjustment order (MCA 1973, s 21(2)/CPA 2004, Sch 5, Pt 2, para 7(1)(c)).

In summary:

  1. the court may make an order against the trustee(s) varying the settlement for the benefit of the parties and the children of the family or either or any of them

  2. any pre-nuptial or post-nuptial settlement may be varied including a settlement made by

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