Cohabitation Agreements: When and How Not to Have One

Girlfriend meets Boyfriend online.

Girlfriend is head over heels with Boyfriend.

Boyfriend tells Girlfriend he is a minister …a bishop … a doctor … a real estate expert … and an attorney.

Boyfriend describes himself online as someone who can help his dates with the gamut from their faith to their finances.

He speaks of marrying Girlfriend.

But first, he reportedly manipulates her into signing a Cohabitation Agreement. A beaut.

The agreement assigns Boyfriend authority to “rule over the affairs of the home”, and holds Girlfriend legally “responsible for all domestic house chores”.

And, of course, allocates “full authority to manage all of the[ir financial] affairs without limitation”. That pertains to all financial accounts, which are required to be “turned over” to him.

Boyfriend also has Girlfriend sign over power of attorney to him as to her property. And a deed to her home.

And Girlfriend isn’t the first victim of Boyfriend’s scheme.

Although Boyfriend has been sued civilly though, he has never been prosecuted for his conduct.

A reasonable cohabitation agreement can be extremely valuable in laying out the legal and financial framework for romantic partners living together outside of marriage (or, for that matter, people who are not romantic partners).

But an unreasonable and overreaching cohabitation agreement (and other transactions) can create a significant expense and hassle, and do financial damage to at least one of the parties to it.

Before entering a cohabitation agreement or other financial transactions with a third party, it is prudent to run a reality check by at least discussing the agreement, ideally with an attorney, but alternatively with another neutral, objective, mature third party with some wisdom, life experience and some experience managing financial affairs.

Read more in this [Charlotte, NC] WBTV 3 news article: 3 women victimized by man they met in on-line dating website.