Co-habitation rights and advice

In addition to assisting married couples and those in civil partnerships, WBW also assist those who have chosen to live together. The law in relation to married couples is quite well defined but clarifying arrangements for those who have been living together is not as straightforward.

At WBW we recognise that there are often many issues to be resolved such as about how property and other assets should be divided as well as making arrangements for the care of children.

WBW can also assist those who have decided to live together at the start of their relationship. We do so by discussing the arrangements with you, asking about issues which in our experience can arise later. We then prepare a cohabitation agreement to record the practical arrangements both whilst living together and in the event of a relationship breaking down at a later date.


What happens if he does not disclose all of the assets? What if I know there is a property he is not disclosing?

When the Court are making decisions, it is made clear that both parties should disclose all of their assets. Solicitors advising parties will also explain that to them.

Will I be able to keep the house?

This is one of the most common concerns for parties going through relationship breakdown. Housing is the priority for any Court, particularly the housing of children and the parent caring for any dependant children most of the time. One of the first steps will be see whether financially that can be achieved but if there is insufficient income, taking into account the combined resources of both parents, then the family home may have to be sold.

Jointly owned properties – can I stop him/her from entering the house?

Whilst property is jointly owned, generally speaking both parties are entitled to live there and so can enter and retain a key unless there is a Court Order (Injunction) in place determining who should live in the property and who can have access to it. Generally, it is not usually possible to stop one party entering the house. It is also inadvisable to change the locks as if the locks are changed, it will be necessary to offer the other party a key. However, it is often the case that we can assist in negotiations so that only one person resides in the property during the difficult period surrounding relationship breakdown to allow the person living there some privacy.