Cohabitation Agreement

Family Lawyer Scarborough

Scarborough Cohabitation Agreement Lawyers

Many couples in Ontario and throughout Canada choose to live together like a married couple, but without actually getting married. This type of relationship is referred to as cohabitation. Just like couples who are married, cohabitating couples do have certain rights in regard to property owned by their common-law partner.

If parties want to ensure that the general laws regarding division property, support, etc. does not apply to them, then the cohabitating couple need to create a cohabitation agreement, which is similar to a marriage contract. If the couple gets married later, then this agreement automatically becomes a prenuptial agreement or marriage contract, as it is referred to in Ontario.

The provisions of the agreement can include specific instructions and details on what will happen should the cohabitating couple decide to end their relationship and separate. For instance, details about how acquired property and assets will be divided can be included.

Additionally, the couple can include instructions for spousal support, who gets to retain the family residence, and other vital things that can make a break up less stressful. If the couple has minor children, they can even include child custody and access details.

It is important to keep in mind, certain requirements will need to be met. For example in Ontario, for spousal support to be considered for a cohabiting couple, the couple must have cohabitated continuously for three years or longer or are in a relationship of some permanence and have a child together.

Most cohabitating people have the misconception their property, assets, and finances are protected because they are not married. However, this is not always the case and you could be required to divide property acquired during the cohabitation.

To ensure you and your partner are protected should your relationship fail, it is best to have a cohabitation agreement in place. For more information about cohabitation agreements, contact our family law firm to schedule a consultation with our cohabitation agreement lawyer in Scarborough today!


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