Unfortunately many couples living together, who are not married, believe they are living within a ‘common law marriage’ This term, which has no legal standing, has led to the misconception that unmarried couples living together acquire rights over each other’s assets, which is not the case.
Any dispute between former cohabitees can be time consuming and expensive as the law in this area is complex. The breakdown of a relationship may leave a party worse off than they expect to be. It is important to know where you stand following the breakdown of a relationship.
It is also important to seek legal advice if you are considering living together and want to know what will happen to your assets, whether owned jointly or separately, acquired before or during the relationship, should the relationship come to an end. You will want your intentions to be clear and interests protected. It is particularly important to consider intentions in relation to the home, children, other assets and debts and what will happen if you separate.
Cohabitation agreements can assist to avoid disputes between a cohabiting couple when their relationship breaks down and we can assist in preparing this document for you.