Cohabitation Agreements

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Cohabitation Agreements can help protect cohabiting partners should their relationship come to an end.

For many, a wedding is an expensive, old fashioned, and unnecessary institution. But marriage is still recognised legally and getting married can confer important legal rights regarding co-ownership of assets and finances to a couple. This can be crucial if the marriage should end in separation.

If you live with a partner but are not married, you may not have any legal right to contest how your shared assets are divided in the event of a separation. While many couples in this situation believe they are protected by something called “common law marriage”, there is, in fact, no such thing in UK law.

This is why couples are increasingly turning to cohabitation agreements as a way of protecting themselves. By coming to an agreement with your partner over what will happen to finances, property, and debt in the event of a separation, you can safeguard yourself against future disputes that could lead to lengthy legal battles.

Our knowledgeable Family Law team possesses many years of experience assisting clients in preparing cohabitation agreements.

What Is A Cohabitation Agreement?

A cohabitation agreement is similar to a prenuptial agreement. It typically includes decisions on how aspects of a couple’s finances and other joint responsibilities will be arranged should they separate. A cohabitation agreement could include:

  • How mortgages or bills will be paid
  • What happens to joint finances like bank accounts and pensions
  • How assets including property will be divided
  • Arrangements for children or pets, if applicable

A cohabitation agreement is legally binding unless deemed unfair in Court. As a formal legal document, it is not something that should be entered into lightly. Each party needs to voluntarily agree to sign, and both should seek legal advice from qualified Family Law Solicitor before they proceed. A third, independent Solicitor will draft the final agreement, ensuring impartiality.

What We Can Offer You

When deciding to sign a cohabitation agreement it is important to seek legal advice from a Solicitor you can trust. We have many years of experience in Family Law, and we are accredited by the Law Society’s Family Law Panel, which demonstrates our team’s commitment to excellence in this field.

Our Past Cases

Below is an example of a cohabitation agreement case that our Family Law team has conducted in the past:

  • Advising in relation to arrangements to be made by a client proposing to live with their partner, but not marry, including considering how to protect existing property rights and drafting of agreement dealing with property rights and regulating financial arrangements.

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Christopher Dolton

Solicitor and Mediator
Divorce and Family Law

Our clients say Christopher is approachable and straightforward to deal with, giving clear and easy to understand advice on specific family law issues.

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