When you, your children, other family members or friends take that step to move in together, rarely does anybody think about what might happen if the relationship should fail.
When a relationship fails it can be very stressful, especially as it is likely that you are financially and emotionally connected to one another through property or other assets. But as things don’t always end as amicably as we imagine they will, there are some important things to think about and be prepared for.
The myth of the ‘common law’ relationship is just that … a myth. Cohabitees have no rights over property if they don’t own any part of it, regardless of how long they have been together – whether 6months or 50 years, the rules are the same. They would have more grounds to claim if they contributed to the upkeep or improvement of the property, e.g.paying towards the mortgage, deposit or towards refurbishment; however, a claim will not definitely be upheld, it would need to be argued and proved, likely at a high cost through the court system if necessary.
Whilst some may think this is not a nice thing to think about, the reality is that relationships do break down, and it is sensible to educate yourself on your rights and have a practical conversation with your partner before you enter into any cohabitation situation. The website link below is a great tool that may make that tricky conversation a little easier, with handy tips on what to consider and explanations of your options.
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