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There is no such thing as a common law husband or wife in English law and generally cohabited are treated as two strangers, if any dispute ends up in court.
A cohabitation agreement is a legally binding document entered into by two people who either are or are about to start living together and sets out their financial obligations to one another.
The agreement can document how you will split your property, its contents, personal belongings, savings and other assets should the relationship break down. It can also be used to set out how you and your partner will manage your day-to-day finances, for example ;
A cohabitation agreement doesn’t cover day-to-day practical obligations and activities, such as who should do the house work or gardening around the home.
Provided they are done correctly, yes. The agreement will be signed as a deed and be contractually binding. You should always take legal advice and think carefully before entering into one.
The Agreement may not be enforceable if it is unfair or becomes unfair as a result of the passage of time. It will not overrule other legal rights; for example, the rights you have if children are involved.
Ideally before you move in with a partner or when you have been living together for many years. The agreement should be reviewed periodically, particularly where there has been a significant change in circumstances, for example the birth of a child.
Cohabitation Agreement will cease to exist upon the marriage, as you will then be subject to matrimonial law.
If you need legal advice about any issue relating to cohabitation, contact our family law solicitors.
In some areas of family law, we offer an introductory meeting with a member of our legal team. This meeting is free and designed for you to get to know our firm, your solicitor and to discuss your case. By completing this initial meeting, you can make an informed choice about how you want to move forward to get the best results.
This initial meeting is up to 30 minutes long and free of charge. This meeting is not designed to offer advice. If specific advice is required and you’d like to continue past the 30 minutes, please let your solicitor know and you may be able to carry on into a more detailed consultation. This time will be chargeable, but your solicitor will tell you how much it will be.