What is a Cohabitation Agreement?

What is a Cohabitation Agreement?

signing an agreement

What is a Cohabitation Agreement?

A cohabitation agreement is a contract made between two people who live together. Normally, this means an unmarried couple, but such agreements can also be made between roommates. If you are wondering if you could benefit from the protection and clear terms that a contract like this would provide, you can talk to a Chatham, NJ family agreement attorney from our firm and read on to learn more about what these pacts can look like.

Why Would I Need a Cohabitation Agreement?

A cohabitation agreement allows you and your partner to set rules about your living arrangement and what would happen if you were to split up. An agreement like this is probably not necessary in every relationship. However, if you have been cohabitating with someone for a long time and you believe that you will continue to live together, then it can be a good idea to make a formal agreement.

These types of contracts are especially good for couples who do not plan to get married for whatever reason. A cohabitation agreement allows them to set some boundaries and terms that would normally be handled through a marital agreement or prenup.

What Should Be Included in a Cohabitation Agreement?

If you are thinking about signing a cohabitation agreement, you should make sure that it actually addresses all of the important elements in your relationship and all of the matters that would need to be addressed in the aftermath of a breakup. A contract would ideally include:

  • How living expenses are divided
  • How shared assets would be split in a breakup
  • Custody plans for shared children and pets
  • How shared debts are handled
  • How property is handled i.e. what is shared and what is individual property?
  • What happens if one of you were to pass away
  • If child support or alimony (“palimony”) would be paid after a breakup
  • How retirement benefits and pensions would be shared

A comprehensive cohabitation agreement can give you peace of mind and prevent future disagreements.

Should I Talk to a Lawyer Before Signing an Agreement?

This can seem less formal than a marriage contract or a lease, but a cohabitation agreement is still a legally binding contract when handled correctly. You want to make sure that the terms are fair and that your best interests are represented. This is why we recommend consulting a lawyer before you sign anything. A seasoned attorney from our firm could spot issues that you did not notice, or they can help you think of more important elements that should be included in the agreement.

Contact Our Law Firm Today

If you are thinking about making your own cohabitation agreement, consider talking to a lawyer first. Contact Lazor Rantas, PC and schedule a consultation with our team. We would be happy to tell you more about these agreements and how you can use one to protect your interests.

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