When you’re about to get married there’s a lot to think about and discuss. One of the least pleasant topics is the prenup, but it’s necessary when entering into the legally binding act of marriage.
However, did you know that those partners, who haven’t signed the papers and had the ceremony, can still have certain legal documents between them?
In recent years it there has been a large increase in couples, who aren’t married, speaking to lawyers about what is called “A CoHabitation Agreement.” This legal agreement has been seen more and more with same sex couples because a lot of states still do not acknowledge same sex marriages.
Now there’s a lot of you thinking, why do I need this if I’m just dating someone? Well, that’s something you will need to think about and discuss with your partner when the time comes. It’s not always something you need to decide after date #3, but once you pass the beginning of a relationship and decide to move in together, a cohabitation agreement, or unmarried prenup, may be a fantastic idea.
Once two people join lives, even if it’s not with a marriage license, they begin to share a lot more than a dinner and a movie a couple times a week. So, what happens to the T.V. you two bought together? Or the furniture you used to decorate your new home? And the bills you have been sharing?
There’s so much more that goes into a serious relationship than just some hugs and kisses and sweet nothings whispered into ears. You begin to share your lives, this means belongings, bills and typically living arrangements. Though no one ever thinks of this when beginning a relationship, and who would want to? That’s just a negative thought to start it all off.
The reality of everything is that not every relationship lasts for the long haul, and in fact the divorce rate in America has surpassed 50%. Relationship counselors have seen that this 50% average of divorces is the same if not more when dealing with unmarried couples. So, the beginning of half the couples, will be abruptly followed by the end.
A study has shown that more couples are ending up in court after a break-up due to situations, finances and material things just like these. This is a great article that dives in a little deeper – Unmarried couples opting for a pre-nup.
Just because you’re not married doesn’t mean you don’t face some similar issues after the fact. Not unlike a divorce a break-up can be messy and emotionally draining. With so much money, time, energy and emotions involved in the entire relationship, it’s hard enough to end it let alone try to figure out who gets what.
Like any other situation there are two sides. And not everyone sees an unmarried prenup “worth it” or really “necessary.” These people do raise a good point, Kelley Long , a freelance finance consultant in Chicago, said “It came down to, well, if I have to protect myself against this stuff, we probably shouldn’t be living together.”
As Kelley said, if you truly need to worry about all of the arrangements for when it ends, and how messy the break-up COULD be, well then, perhaps you shouldn’t be taking this next step with this person. But that my friend, is another story entirely.