Protecting Your Future - Marriage or Cohabitation

When you make that ultimate decision as to whether you and your partner are going to get married or cohabit, it is very important to consider the financial aspect of your relationship.

This is without doubt one of the most important considerations you will need to make during the course of your relationship. By turning your attention to it at the outset, you will bring certainty and clarity as to what will happen in the event of separation.

Nobody goes in a relationship thinking that they may separate one day, but the best way of protecting your future is by having a Cohabitation Agreement (unmarried couples) or a Pre or Post Nuptial Agreement (couples about to marry or who are already married). These agreements offer the certainty and clarity needed to provide you with security going forwards.

Relationship breakdowns can be overwhelming and lead to a great deal of anxiety, stress, and sleepless nights. Questions about whether you can afford to buy out your partner’s share in the property, will the house need to be sold, can you remain in the property if the property is jointly owned or in your partner’s sole name, where will you and/or the children live. On top of all of this is the key question of whether you and your partner can be civilised about matters, especially the financial aspect of that relationship following a separation or relationship breakdown. Cohabitation agreements and pre or post nuptial agreements aid the transition at the end of a relationship because the difficult conversations about the finances have been had at a point where you and your partner are on good terms with one another and have had the time and space to discuss what you would like to happen in the event of a relationship breakdown.

It must be made clear that whilst Pre and Post Nuptial Agreements are not legally binding on the courts, the courts will give significant weight to such agreements when determining the division of matrimonial assets. Provided specific factors have been considered and the agreement is fair and reasonable in the circumstances, the court will uphold pre and post nuptial agreements.  

But how do you bring up the discussion about these agreements with your partner without killing the romance? Answer - with sensitivity, love and encouragement about ensuring the protection and investment of both of your futures in the event of a relationship breakdown.

Here at Judge & Priestley our team are experienced working with people who are considering cohabiting or indeed getting married. We offer a free 30-minute consultation service to discuss the matters with you and advise accordingly. Please contact Angela Amponsah on 020 3928 7135 / 07732686223 or by email on

Written by : Angela Amponsah (Senior Associate Solicitor)

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