A Divorce Lawyer in London’s Advice for a Successful Second Marriage

An older bride and groom, groom holding bride from behind, bride holding a large bouquet, faces slightly blurred

Making a second trip down the aisle? The common understanding is that second marriages can be more complicated and the odds of lasting are against you, but is this accurate? How do you make sure that a second marriage is also your last?

A lot of anxiety is tied up in the concept of a second marriage. Resistance to a second marriage isn’t uncommon thanks to the idea that your first marriage “failed”. This concept isn’t helped by the Press, either, who like to propagate the idea that we have a far higher divorce rate than is actually the case.

In the UK, we’re actually quite good at second marriages. In fact, they’re more likely to last than the first ones. This is great news for those of you who are about to tie the knot for the second time and are having pre-wedding jitters. How do you make it last and beat the odds of divorce on your second attempt? As divorce lawyers in London, we’re uniquely placed to witness the lifespan of marriages, from prenup to divorce, and what goes wrong — or right. Follow this advice and raise your chances of making your marriage work this time around.

Learn From the Mistakes You Made in Your First Marriage

They say practice makes perfect — and a lot of divorces these days are due to marrying young. Marrying while in your early twenties means that you’ll be going through a lot of growth and life changes together, so you need to be growing and changing in roughly the same direction. If you divorce, understanding and taking responsibility for the reasons you divorced is crucial if you want to make a second marriage work.

All You Need Is Love may be a popular song by The Beatles, but it’s not a popular one in the offices of therapists. As many who marry too young discover, it takes a lot more than love to sustain a marriage. Perhaps you didn’t take enough time to hear each other, you let communication breakdown, or maybe you were just too different. Whatever the reason for your divorce, make sure you’re comfortable with what happened before you attempt a second marriage.

Marriage counselling is well known, but have you also thought of divorce counselling? By the time you get into a second marriage, you’ll have a lot of physical baggage: kids, a house, a mortgage, debt, loans, pets — so the least you can do is clear your emotional baggage. Get to the bottom of why your divorce really happened.

Don’t Forget the Prenup From Your Divorce Lawyer in London

Speaking of all that physical baggage, what happens to it when you get married? Prenups aren’t just for the Hugh Hefners of the world, marrying their seventh wife and worried about their fortunes. A prenup is insurance against anything that might happen. As one of the best family law solicitors in London, we’re always more than happy to help engaged couples map out what their expectations are for their life together.

In fact, there’s no decent reason for not getting a prenup. Far from not trusting the other person, it can mean something far more important: you still have a chance of friendship if you do find yourself going through a divorce again. Prenups stop nasty, drawn-out battles and prevent anyone becoming the victim.

When it’s your second marriage, it’s as much about not inheriting someone’s debt as it is about not inheriting all their money. Airing your dirty laundry before you get married — by which I mean your financial situation, with all its ups and downs — will help you start your second marriage with a clean slate and give it a better shot at survival. Want to make sure your kid’s college fund from your first marriage is safe, or that your property portfolio stays in your power? Having the security will give you peace of mind to not worry about the details and enjoy married life.

Blend Your Families and Make Sure You Can All Live in Harmony

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Property price inflation means that cuckoo children — children who return to a nest that is no longer theirs long after they should have flown it — are forcing their step-parents out. Adult children, sometimes with their own partners or even families, are moving back in with one of their parents to save money.

When both parents are biological, this tends to make a situation like this easier. For step-parents, though, it’s a minefield. The money being spent is often the household’s income, meaning that if the step-parent has their own adult children, this could cause comparison issues. Likewise, the step-parent may not feel comfortable offering opinions or voicing their feelings about the presence of their spouse’s offspring. Becoming a step-parent is challenging at the best of times, but the children being adult offers a whole new set of challenges that must not be underestimated.

The children may also feel resentment towards their parent’s new spouse, especially when money is involved. This is another reason why a prenuptial agreement from a divorce lawyer in London is important. Having your child’s inheritance clearly protected can stop any doubts they might have about your new partner, even if they’re doubts you know are unfounded. The moral of the story is: if you’re planning a second marriage, make sure you can live in close quarters with their offspring if the need arises, or risk paying the consequences.

A second marriage is a new set of challenges, but don’t forget the most important thing: it’s also a new set of delights. You’re both older and wiser, and marrying for love. The chance to combine two lives that have already been so lived in can be more work but is incredibly rewarding when it’s successful. Never forget to work on your marriage every single day, never stop loving each other and keeping that love alive, and you’re sure to have many more years of married bliss.

Engaged and planning your second marriage? Don’t forget to talk to the best family law solicitors in London about what steps to take before it becomes legal. Take that crucial step to planning your life together: call KMJ solicitors today for a FREE consultation.

Clayton spent five years working in family law with a firm in Australia before moving to the UK in 1999. He deals with all aspects of family law, specialising in all family matters, offshore trusts, company structures, international law, prenuptial agreements, high net worth cases and cohabitation law.