Cohabitation agreements are highly recommended for unmarried couples to protect their interest. There is a myth that if you live together in a long term relationship, you are regarded as common law ‘husband and wife’, this is incorrect and does not exist in law. For unmarried couples their rights differ significantly from married couples especially in relation to property and financial matters.
Although most couples begin cohabiting whilst happy in the relationship and with a view that it will not breakdown, it is imperative to ensure that there is formal agreement as to ownership of property. Once a legal dispute over property begins, it becomes very complex and expensive and we aim to avoid this hostile situation with forward thinking protective planning.
There is a need for unmarried couples who live together to protect themselves and their assets and this unfortunately is not recognised by many. When a relationship breaks down it is usually the case where each party will keep only what they legally own or what they put into the property.
If you are considering living with your partner or are already living together, we would recommend seeking legal advice regarding your financial position and cohabitation agreements. Jacksons offer a 30 minute free consultation.