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Cohabitation

Cohabitation Agreements and Cohabitation Deeds

We are able to advise you on how cohabitation agreements and cohabitation deeds should be drafted.

We can advise you on the normal contents of such deeds and agreements.  We will also advise you on the enforceability of such cohabitation agreements and cohabitation deeds.  We will advise you on the necessity of obtaining independent legal advice and of revealing and declaring assets, in order to ensure that deeds and agreements are enforceable.

We will also advise on how the court would divide the assets without an agreement or deed.

We will go through the law with you on resulting trusts, constructive trusts, proprietary estoppel, equitable accounting and the Law of Property (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act.

We will, if you wish to understand the law thoroughly, explain to you what happened in the relevant cases.

What to do if you cohabited and now wish to separate after cohabitation

We will advise you on how to divide the assets after the separation of former cohabitees.

The starting point is often the TR1 (transfer form) on any property.  This should be examined first.

Often however the property is in one person's name and sometimes there is no declaration of who owns the property.  If there is no cohabitation deed or agreement it is then necessary to examine the following complicated principles.

  1. Estoppel (both proprietary and promissory estoppel)
  2. Resulting trust.
  3. Constructive trusts.
  4. Equitably accounting.

We have particular experience in this field and are able to guide you through how the law works in this area of law.  We will go through the case law with you so that you have an understanding of your position to help you make the right decisions.

Resulting Trusts and Constructive Trusts in simple terms occur when a person makes a substantial contribution to the purchase of a property by either payments towards the purchase price, the mortgage, the bills etc.  Equitable accounting in simple terms is a calculation of the parties contributions to the property.

Estoppel occurs when a person makes a promise, that a person relies on and another person acts to their detriment.