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Effective and Enforceable Cohabitation Agreements Are a Smart Option

Couples are choosing to live together without getting married at rates higher than they’ve ever been, but not enough individuals worry about protecting their property and rights if a cohabitation relationship ends or becomes adversarial. A legal cohabitation agreement can help both individuals feel more comfortable as they take this next step in their relationship.

A cohabitation agreement can encompass several potential issues: 

  • A typical cohabitation agreement explains the terms that both parties plan to abide by for as long as they live together. 
  • It also specifies how property will be divided if the couple should break up or move into separate residences. 
  • Both parties should also fully disclose their assets to avoid unintentional omissions in the agreement. The document may also include information about each party’s individual property, which is considered separate from any community property they own jointly. 
  • It can also clarify that the couple agrees they are not entering into a common-law marriage, which can be very important and save much stress, time and money if one party eventually makes such a claim.

To be valid, a cohabitation agreement must be fully understood by both parties at the time of signing. Therefore, each party should be represented by their own legal counsel to ensure that the document protects both parties’ rights and best interests.

At Hargrave Family Law, we can help you evaluate whether a cohabitation agreement is right for you. To find out if a cohabitation agreement is a valid option for your situation, reach out to us at Hargrave Family Law today.