Moving in with your partner is exciting, and begins a new chapter of your life together, so it’s difficult to think about what would happen if you should ever break-up. Unfortunately, people who are not married do not have legal protection if things go wrong with their relationship.
Cohabiting Couples Who Break-up: The First Legal Steps
Planning what you both would like to happen if things were to ever go wrong does not mean that you are expecting your relationship to eventually break down. It does though acknowledge that living together is a big commitment.
Having a Legal Agreement in place will allow you to live with the security that should something happen to either of you, or you decide to split up, you both agree to financial obligations and the raising of your children.
What are Cohabitation Agreements?
A Cohabitation Agreement (also known as a Living Together Agreement) sets out what will happen to any money, property or possessions if you split up. It can also cover financial obligations during the relationship, such as payment of the mortgage or rent, and household bills.
If you know from the outset what your rights and obligations are, it means there is little risk of an expensive legal dispute, should things go wrong.
A carefully considered Cohabitation Agreement can help to prevent post-separation disagreements and unnecessary litigation over a number of crucial issues, including:
- Who has what legal share in a property.
- How any family businesses will be managed.
- How debts will be settled or dealt with.
- How shared savings and other wealth will be split.
- How the mortgage and other property costs will be paid.
- Who will take responsibility for and financially support any children.
- How any property acquired during the relationship will be owned.
- What happens to your car(s).
- Who has custody of any family pets.
- How adjustments to pension schemes will be made.
- What temporary arrangements will be put in place while you sort out your separation.
- An Agreement can also set out what will happen to finances and family, if one person dies.
At Ashmans Solicitors we can help you with drawing up your Cohabitation Documents and Agreements, we can also revise them for you, when you have children/further children, if you want to add a business into the agreement, or purchase further houses. We are dedicated to providing the best possible legal advice and services to those going through difficult times.
We would encourage you to come and see us for an initial meeting so you fully understand your options.
Ashmans Solicitors Family Law Team advise those people who are seeking help with all Family Law matters – including Cohabitation Agreements. Please lose no time in getting in touch with us.