Cohabitation Breakdown (Opposite Sex and Same Sex Relationships)
The legal rights and responsibilities of people living with their partner is often unclear.
There are some who have cohabited for many years who believe that they are in a “common law” relationship and that it gives them the same rights as a married couple.
This is not the case at the moment.
There is no right to claim spousal maintenance and there is no right to claim a share of the other person’s pension.
However, it may still make sense to enter into a cohabitation agreement prior to commencing cohabitation.
While this may seem cynical to some, a cohabitation contract makes good sense in many cases – especially when it comes to the home that you share.
At Tollers, we can outline the main areas where issues may arise in respect of the home and we will suggest ways to avoid potential pitfalls.
A contract can help couples avoid misunderstandings knowing where they stand with the home whilst they are living together and also help guide couples if the relationship breaks down.
We cannot represent both parties in putting together a cohabitation agreement. This would create a conflict of interest should they experience a cohabitation breakdown. We can represent one of the individuals and draft the cohabitation agreement. The other party will be advised to take independent legal advice but it is a choice not a requirement to take legal advice.
A cohabiting couple should also think about what they would want to happen with their interest in the home in the event of their death. The cohabitation agreement will not deal with this. It would have to be dealt with by way of a Will but the cohabitation agreement can include an agreement not to challenge the terms of the Will. Therefore, a woman “A” with children from a marriage who has her own property might want a cohabitation agreement in which her new partner “B” agrees that he (or she) will not as a result of cohabitation make a claim against the Property in the relationship breaks down or challenge the Will of “A” in which she leaves the house to her children.
Talk to Tollers
At Tollers, our experienced Family Law team can assist you with all aspects of Cohabitation Breakdown (Opposite Sex and Same Sex Relationships). Contact our Family Law solicitors on 01604 258 558 or fill out an online enquiry below and we will call you back.