Pre-nuptial agreements, which are the norm in America and in many countries across Europe, don’t hold much weight in the British judiciary.That is, until now.
Judges found in favour of his ex-wife, a wealthy German heiress and one of the richest women in Europe, based on the pre-nup the couple signed in 1998.
Nicolas Granatino, a French-born former banker who was seeking a bigger divorce payout from German heiress Katrin Radmacher. He claimed their pre-nup shouldn’t be enforced because Radmacher withheld the full extent of her wealth and he didn’t have proper legal advice when he signed it.
Before Radmacher and Granatino (who worked in the emerging markets unit at JPM) were married 12 years ago, she asked her banker hubby to sign a pre-nup that said, according to Bloomberg, “neither party would benefit financially in a divorce.”
But Granatino departed the banking world a few years later to work at Oxford, and obviously his earnings nosedived as a result. By the time the separation rolled around in 2006, his savings were meager and his wife was supporting their two kids.The High Court at first demanded Radmacher pay Granatino more than $7 million, because the judge deemed the pre-nup “void.” An appeals court then overturned the ruling, but Granatino went back for more.
Now the four year dispute is over, but more importanly, the decision ushers in a new precedent for respecting pre-nups across the U.K.