If you are in a common law relationship, in which you live together and split financial responsibilities, you may assume that you have the same rights as married couples should the relationship end. However, this is not always the case. Unlike married couples, Ontario law does not guarantee an equal 50-50 split of your assets if your common law relationship ends. To protect both yourself and your partner, it is best to get a cohabitation agreement in Waterloo if the two of you are already living together or plan to move in together. The Law Offices of C. Richard Buck can represent you during the creation of this agreement to ensure your rights are protected in the event of a breakup.
What is a Cohabitation Agreement?
A cohabitation agreement is a contract made between two non-married people who are living together or who plan to live together. This agreement provides details about their rights and obligations in the event that the relationship ends and the two part ways. Many couples choose to sign a cohabitation agreement when they move in together so that all the details are spelled out should the relationship end. It is a great way to avoid expensive and nasty disputes at the end of a relationship since all of the terms have already been agreed upon.
Why Do I Need a Lawyer to Make a Cohabitation Agreement?
Some people assume they can come to an agreement on their own. Even if you and your partner are on the exact same page about what should happen if the relationship ends, the Law Offices of C. Richard Buck always recommends that both you and your partner each have a lawyer during this process. You also shouldn’t both be represented by the same counsel. This helps to protect all parties involved and helps to prevent the agreement from being thrown out or attacked in the event of a breakup as each party has had independent legal advice.
Each lawyer will be able to listen to your situations separately, advising each of you on what key terms should be included in the agreement. The two lawyers will then discuss and help each of you negotiate these terms. They will be able to help you decide whether the agreement is acceptable of if some of the terms should be changed for your best interests.
What Happens to Our Cohabitation Agreement if We Get Married?
In the event that the two parties involved in a cohabitation agreement decide to get married, the agreement is then deemed a marriage contract (also known as a prenup). All of the provisions of the contract remain the same and the agreement continues to bind the two parties throughout the marriage.
If you would like to learn more about the cohabitation agreements we can provide to Waterloo residents, please call our law office today. Our office staff can set up a time for you to discuss your situation. Richard also negotiates and drafts prenuptial agreements.