In recent years, the number of unmarried couples cohabiting in the UK has increased significantly.
In fact, the proportion of couples cohabiting in England and Wales has increased from 20.6 per cent in 2011 to 24.3 per cent in 2021.
This shift reflects a broader societal change, as more individuals are choosing to live with their partners before, or even instead of, getting married.
For this reason, it is crucial to consider obtaining a cohabitation agreement. This can help protect both parties from potential disputes and financial stress down the line.
A regular review of cohabitation agreements is also essential, as life progresses and so do our circumstances. It is important the agreement remains relevant and fair to both parties.
Why should you have a cohabitation agreement?
Without a cohabitation agreement, you may not be legally protected in the event of a relationship breakdown or the death of your partner.
A cohabitation agreement can bring peace of mind to your relationship. By reaching an agreement before or during your shared living arrangement, you will:
Seek legal advice
When drawing up a cohabitation agreement, it is strongly recommended to seek legal advice.
Both parties are required to seek independent legal advice as to the terms and implications of the agreement. This will ensure the document is legally binding and there is no doubt as to what is being agreed to.
Updating your cohabitation agreement
The progression of a relationship often necessitates change, growth and mutual understanding.
As with any legal document, a cohabitation agreement should be reviewed regularly and updated as necessary.
You should consider updating the agreement regularly. Here is why:
Updating your cohabitation agreement isn’t about anticipating the end of a relationship but rather about ensuring that you both feel secure and protected within it.
It is about open communication, fairness and mutual respect. So, whether it has been a year or a decade, consider reviewing your agreement and making any necessary updates.
If you would like more advice on cohabitation agreements, get in touch with our expert team today.
Mander Hadley Solicitors is not only a long established firm, but is vibrant and successful, with a forward thinking approach.
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