Country’s most senior female judge to give lecture

Lady Hale

Lady Hale

The most senior woman judge in the country will deliver Liverpool Law School’s annual lecture.

Lady Hale, the first woman Justice of the Supreme Court who also became the UK’s first woman Law Lord in January 2004 will speak about pre-nuptial agreements and the recent high-profile divorce case of Radmacher v Granatino. She was one of the judges involved in the Supreme Court’s recent case which involved a German heiress and a French investment banker.

The couple signed a pre-nuptial agreement in Germany which gave neither any claim upon the other in the event of divorce. After marrying and setting up home in England, they subsequently divorced. The case reached the UK’s top court after the husband – who had quit his lucrative career for academia – challenged the original agreement and sought a settlement for himself as well as for the couple’s two children.

Lady Hale strongly argued in her judgment that, while such an agreement should be taken into account by the divorce court and given effect if it was fair in the circumstances, as they had turned out, it is not the same to suggest such agreements are binding.

Professor Fiona Beveridge, Head of the School of Law and Social Justice at the University, said: “We’re delighted that Lady Hale will speak on such an important and topical issue. The lecture will consider whether it is time for the law to be clearer on pre-nuptial agreements – and what the consequences for couples and society might be in the future. It will also consider whether it is right that people should be able to contract out of the fundamental principle of equality in marriage which is the basis of our current law.”

The lecture takes place on Thursday 4 November at 6pm in Lecture Theatre 2, Sherrington Building, Ashton Street.

Anyone wishing to attend should contact Kayte Kelley on 0151 794 2815 or email

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