On behalf of Stange Law Firm, PC posted in Unmarried Couples on Saturday, January 2, 2016.
If you and your significant other live together, you will likely amass a great deal of property together. Anything from a bed or a sofa to a television or even a kitchen utensil could become the source of a heated property dispute in the event that you and your significant other ever break up. This is because, legally, it is extremely difficult to determine who owns what in the relationship, especially if the couple did not keep records or an agreement.
With a detailed cohabitation property agreement, you and your significant other can keep detailed records of who owns what, and this will prevent a property dispute later on. When it comes to creating the agreement, there are some critical components that should be included, such as:
- Ownership of certain assets.
- Sharing of finances such as income and expenditures.
- Management of financial accounts and policies.
- How assets should be distributed if you and your partner should split.
The key thing to remember is that the courts often do not handle the division of assets and any kind of support payments for unmarried couples in the way that they would for married couples. However, a cohabitation property agreement can be used as a binding document, allowing the courts to legally enforce them. Essentially, matters of division and support payments are determined beforehand by the couple, rather than afterward by the courts.
If you and your significant other live together, it is in your best interests to meet with an attorney and discuss your legal options. An attorney can also help you draft a cohabitation agreement and give you additional legal advice particular to the state of Missouri.