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If you live with your partner, but you are not a married couple or civil partners, did you know there is no law in England and Wales to protect you in the same way as married couples?
Regardless of how long you have been living together, in the event of a split, or should one of you pass away, there are no laws that set down how shared property and assets should be divided and nothing to stipulate what should happen to any children you may have.
Protection for your Family and your Assets
To reduce the potential financial and legal problems that often arise when couples who are not married or civil partners split, a cohabitation agreement is recommended.
At HCB Solicitors, our family law specialists have extensive experience in drafting cohabitation agreements, also known as ‘living together agreements’. Each is tailored specifically to the couple’s circumstances and covers property and assets, and, where relevant, children.
Property and Assets
Unlike married couples or civil partners, cohabiting couples have no guarantees of who will receive or inherit what should there be a split or one partner die. Making a will can ensure your partner and dependents are provided for in the event of your death and assets are distributed as you wish. But in the event of a separation, you will need a cohabitation agreement to formalise how assets should be divided.
There may be solely owned property but joint financial commitments to it, in which case it is important to ensure if there is a split, the partner who doesn’t own the property but has contributed towards it is not left with nothing.
If there is jointly owned property, it may be beneficial to review how this is owned. If required we can call upon the expertise of our colleagues in the HCB property team to advise on the most appropriate type of ownership depending on your circumstances.
We will ensure your cohabitation agreement is focused on the best interests of the children in the event of a split and can also refer you to our expert colleagues for advice on providing for your children via your will, and appointing guardians.
If you are living together and have children, it is important to realise that the father only has an automatic right to parental responsibility if the child was born after December 2003 and he is named on the birth certificate. Otherwise, only married fathers hold this right.
The expertise of the family law specialists at HCB Solicitors is extensive and our service thorough, so we will discuss this with you whilst preparing your cohabitation agreement.
A Fully Comprehensive Service from Family Law Experts
HCB Solicitors offers a fully comprehensive service when it comes to drafting cohabitation agreements, ensuring every aspect of your circumstances is considered and all important eventualities covered. If you wish to protect your interests as a cohabiting couple, contact us today for expert advice.
When there’s a fight to be had the team did not back away, however, when there was a deal to be done the team did it.
Experiencing family issues? For quality advice that takes everyone’s best interests into consideration and focuses on long term good relations, contact HCB Solicitors.