Cohabitation agreements

Setting out the rights and responsibilities of each partner

Protecting your cohabitation rights

If you are considering moving in together as an unmarried couple, you may wish to formalise the financial relationship between you; this can be achieved by way of a cohabitation agreement. A cohabitation agreement sets out arrangements for finances, property and children while you’re living together and if you split up, become ill or die.

You can make an agreement at any time. It’s good to do it before you move in together. But you may want to consider one if you decide to have children or get a mortgage as without one you do not have many rights.

Reasons for a cohabitation agreement?

Many misconceptions exist surrounding the status and financial implications of cohabiting relationships. You don’t automatically have rights like married couples – even if you’ve lived together for a long time and have children. Having a legal document like a cohabitation agreement can be useful, alongside a Will, if one of you becomes seriously ill, dies or if you split up.

It will protect you both, and any other family members who’ll be affected. An agreement can make sure you have a share of each others’ assets and also help you divide up bills and other responsibilities while you live together.

Are they legally binding?

Yes, provided they are done properly. The agreement will be signed as a deed and be contractually binding. You should therefore take legal advice and think carefully before entering into one. 

Whatever your situation, we have the experience and legal expertise to help you choose the right options to protect your interests. We can help you with all aspects of cohabitation, giving you complete peace of mind about living together as an unmarried couple.

Talk to us

    January 26, 2024

    Taking the ‘living together’ leap : what advice should you seek?   

    February 13, 2023

    Bereavement support for cohabitees: A step in the right direction

    August 17, 2022

    Better late than never : campaign to protect cohabiting couples gains momentum

    February 15, 2022

    We’re moving in together: who owns what legally?