Cohabiting? 3 Things To Include On Your Agreement


If you live with a long-term partner but are not married, you may want to consider creating a cohabitation agreement. This agreement is designed for unmarried couples that live together, and it is done as a way to protect both parties. You can customize a cohabitation agreement to fit your needs, but you should make sure your agreement contains these three things.

1. Responsibilities and Obligations

A cohabitation agreement protects both partners because it is a legally-binding contract. One of the first things to consider including on your agreement is the responsibilities and obligations of each person.

If you are just moving in together and are planning on dividing the expenses of the house, make sure you write down how they will be divided. This will help each person know what he or she is responsible for, and it may help reduce money-related conflicts in the household.

If you already live together and the financial aspects of the relationship are working fine, you may decide not to include these things in the agreement.

2. Property Rights

The second thing to consider including is property rights. While you may not think you will ever split up, it's better to plan this out in advance just in case. Your agreement should clearly state what each of you own and have rights to. This will be extremely important if you do split up, but it can also be important if one or the other dies.

You can also clearly state who will obtain possession of the house if the relationship ends, and you should make arrangements for all other assets owned.

It's also important to include details about debts, especially if you have mutual debts. For example, if you have a credit card that you both use and it carries a balance, you might want to include instructions that you agree to split the debt equally if the relationship ends.

3. Issues Relating to Children

When a cohabiting couple has children together, including information about them on this agreement is also important. You may want to agree in advance how you will handle:

  • Dividing time with the kids
  • Child support
  • Choice of school
  • Other responsibilities relating to the kids

A cohabitation agreement is a great way to make a plan for your relationship, and it offers protection to both of you. You can visit a family lawyer in your area like Harold Salant Strassfield & Spielberg to get a cohabitation agreement created, and you must both be able to reach agreements for the issues that will be included. 


21 November 2014