Cohabitation is an arrangement which refers to unmarried couples who live together on a permanent or long-term basis. UK Law refers to couples who live together as cohabitees.
Cohabiting couple families in the UK have risen by almost 30% over the last 10 years making it one of the fastest growing family types. However many couples believe that by living together for a long period of time makes them ‘common law’ husband and wives, however there is no such legal status in the UK.
In comparison to married couples, cohabiting couples do not have a legal right to maintenance, a share of the assets such as property or inherited property, regardless of the number of years they have been together and whether they have children.
What is a Cohabitation Agreement?
A Cohabitation or Living Together Agreement sets out who owns what and in what proportion. This agreement also lets you document how you will split your property, its contents, personal belongings, savings and other assets should the relationship break down. It can also cover how you will support your children, over and above any legal requirements to maintain them, as well as how you would deal with bank accounts, debts, and joint purchases such as a car.
The agreement can also be used to set out how you and your partner will manage your day-to-day finances whilst you are living together. This can include how much each of you contributes to the rent or the mortgage and any bills.
How We Can Help You
Setting up a Cohabitation Agreement can seem daunting, however by being realistic at the start of your relationship can save you from emotional and financial issues in the future. A Living Together Agreement allows you to set out things in a fair way without any pressure, helping you to avoid any disputes which could arise if the relationship breaks down.
If you are looking to set up a Cohabitation Agreement, our panel firm of Family Law solicitors can help you! Alternatively, if your relationship has broken down and you would like to speak to a Family Law solicitor regarding your legal situation simply call us on 0845 603 6544 today!
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