Cohabitation Agreements


Why would someone need this service?

Co-habitation Agreements can be useful for unmarried couples who are thinking about living together. They are particularly important when parties already own property or have responsibilities to other people, such as their children. In these circumstances, they may wish to enter into a written agreement before starting to live together which will set out how any property is to be owned and, for example, whether they will both have rights over property that is owned by just one of them.

Once such an agreement has been entered into, the couple can live together knowing that in the event of the relationship breaking down, there is already a clear agreement on what should happen with any property.

How does the process work?

Each party must seek advice from a separate lawyer to ensure that their interests are fully protected and that there is no conflict of interest. Each lawyer takes full instructions from their client, especially in relation to financial matters, to ensure that the agreement fully reflects their circumstances and wishes. One lawyer will then draft an agreement incorporating all of this information and send it to the other, who will then consider the agreement and either make amendment or approve it, based on instructions received from their client.

Once the agreement is approved by both parties, each must sign it and keep a copy, as it cannot be registered anywhere.

How long does it take?

Normally it should take about a month to complete a co-habitation agreement, as it will often be passed backwards and forwards between the two solicitors with various amendments being made to it before a final version is agreed. The process, however, can be completed more quickly if necessary, especially if the agreement is fairly simple and each party is in full agreement early on about what they want it to say.

Is it expensive? How do the costings work?

Your first consultation with us will be for a fixed fee of £100 + VAT for a face-to-face consultation of up to one hour. When we have established the level of service that is required based on your personal circumstances, we will provide you with a estimate for our acting for you from that point onwards.

What should people consider before calling?

Before calling Grant Saw, potential clients should consider whether they want to regulate how they live in this way. They should always remember that the agreement could be held against them in the future if their circumstances change.

Why are Grant Saw the best people for the job?

At Grant Saw we have experienced lawyers who specialise in this area. Therefore, our clients can be sure that they will receive a comprehensive, personal service from a lawyer who can advise them fully on the implications of their decisions.

Cohabitation Agreements tips

Before starting the drafting process, it is always advisable to have all the relevant information available and to discuss exactly what you wish to be included in the agreement. If these ideas are written down and agreed, it will save a great deal of drafting time which will assist in reducing your legal costs.

Cohabitation Agreements myth busting

What myths surround this area?

Some people believe that by simply living together for a long time they gain rights against their partner. However, this is not necessarily the case, especially when there are no children involved. For this reason, rights over property owned by someone else should be recorded so that, should the need arise, documentary evidence of a legally binding agreement is readily available.

Meet the Cohabitation Agreements team