Cohabitation Agreements

About ten percent of all households include unmarried couples living together, sometimes temporarily and sometimes for the long haul.

They may pool their resources to cover living expenses, buy things, businesses and/or real estate together.

If they aren’t legally married and either one of them dies or walks out on either the business and/or personal relationship, one or both of them may be unpleasantly surprised by what rights they do – or don’t – have to the property acquired.

There are three main measures people can take to ensure the outcome they want:

  1. a written agreement setting out their rights and obligations and
  2. titling the assets after careful thoughtand
  3. a will

All three measures are necessary.


Depending on how each particular asset is titled, only one of the above measures may come into play.

But it may be a different one of the measures for each asset.

If the assets are significant (to you), you can’t be too thorough and comprehensive in your protection strategy.

Read more about Protecting the assets of unmarried couples in this BankRate article.