'You don't go up the aisle with a bouquet and come back down with half the farm' - Should you sign a prenuptial agreement?
An expert panel at the Ploughing Championships has advised farmers to update their will regularly and to sign a prenuptial agreement in order to protect their farm.
Speaking from The Irish Independent tent in Tullamore, the panel discussed marriage, prenuptials, divorce, succession and wills and how farmers can protect the ownership of their land.
Farm Ireland Editor Margaret Donnelly hosted the panel that featured Dearbhail McDonald, Group Business Editor at INM, Deirdre Flynn, a solicitor in Kerry, Teresa Murphy, a barrister in Galway and Martin O'Sullivan, author of the Farmer's Handbook and an agricultural consultant.
Commencing the talk, solicitor Deirdre Flynn said that there is no automatic entitlement to your partner's land if you are not married but that you can apply through the court to become a "qualified cohabitant" which would grant you entitlement to the land.
"There are no fast and hard rules in family law. You don't go up the aisle with a bouquet and come back down with half the farm. It's true in some situations but not in all. Each case is different."
Group Business Editor at INM Dearbhail McDonald said: "Farmers were hugely opposed to the divorce referendum because farmers were afraid that it would lead to the division of land and a breakdown of generations. However now, it is farmers who are leading the way in calls for prenuptial agreements.
"After a lot of reluctance and change, the courts are now taking into consideration prenuptial agreements but they must be fair."
Barrister Teresa Murphy said that there has been a huge increase in the number if prenuptial agreements in the past few years.