Contrary to popular belief, common law marriage does not exist in Scotland (although couples that move in together and don’t legally formalise their relationship through marriage or civil partnership are granted some rights if the relationship breaks down or one partner dies).
Following a relationship breakup or someone passing away, this can cause a grey area when it comes to sorting childcare or dividing property and financial assets as you may not be entitled to everything you assumed. Many couples use a cohabitation agreement to keep control over their affairs and help minimise legal and financial problems should they part ways.
A cohabitation agreement is a legally binding document that details what should happen if a relationship breaks down. It can also regulate matters that arise during the relationship. Exactly what is covered in a cohabitation agreement depends on the couple’s particular circumstances, but it could include: clarification of property ownership, the division of assets, arrangements in relation to children, and regulation of day-to-day financial matters.
You could benefit from a cohabitation agreement if:
- You are buying a property together and one of you is paying more towards the deposit.
- Your partner is moving into a property you own.
- You have children together.
A similar agreement can also be entered into to regulate the finances with the partner you live with following separation.
Our specialist family law solicitors ensure all of our clients’ cohabitation agreements are as comprehensive and watertight as possible. Our aim is to provide peace of mind to help you feel more secure.