About cohabiting couples
Unmarried couples do not have the same legal rights as their married counterparts. This means matters involving property, finances and children can be left uncertain for couples that choose to live together but not to marry.
With marriage rates declining, the number of cohabiting unmarried couples is constantly on the rise. As a national specialist law firm, we have the extensive experience you will need to be guided through your options regardless of whether you are in a relationship or trying to make an amicable agreement at the end of one.
According to research by the Co-op, around 1 in 4 cohabiting couples believe they have the same legal protection as married couples due to something called a ‘common law marriage’. However, there is no such thing as a ‘common law marriage’ which means that unmarried couples can suffer from unexpected consequences due to events such as death or relationship breakdown.
A cohabitation agreement can set out who owns what within a relationship and in what proportion each partner owns it. It allows couples to split their property, personal belongings, savings and any other assets so they can have certainty in their future.
Any children in the relationship can also be safeguarded from unexpected events, as the agreement will be able to deal with questions of how children will be supported in the future.
Independent legal advice is crucial in the drawing up of a cohabitation agreement, as this will ensure it has the full force of the law. Further, a specialist lawyer can ensure that the agreement covers as many issues as it possibly can.
It may not be the most romantic prospect but it can help both you and your partner feel more secure in your futures and in the relationship. To that end, our lawyers at DPP Law can use their extensive experience in this specialism to sensitively go through the options for the agreement with you both.
Separating couples do not have the same rights as divorcees no matter how long they have been living together in a relationship akin to that of a husband and wife.
In the absence of a cohabitation agreement, the breakdown of a relationship can have massive implications for a cohabitee who is dependent on the other. The problems can include having no right to maintenance and no claim to property, capital or pension claims that are not in their name.
The best way to resolve these matters is through a legally enforceable Separation Agreement which will allow you to clearly lay out how all the assets you both own will be divided up between yourselves.
Legal advice is vital to ensure the agreement is comprehensive and to ensure that you have a full understanding of the consequences of the agreement. Our lawyers specialise in personalised services where they give you jargon free advice and support you through this often upsetting process so that you can come out of it feeling more secure about your future. Call today or fill in an enquiry form now for more information.