Marriage and divorce laws provide a lot of legal protection to spouses in case the relationship ends. Unmarried partners – whether straight or gay – do not automatically enjoy the same protections.
Although marriage and divorce laws cannot be used to protect unmarried partners in a long-term relationship, the laws of contract can be. An unmarried couple can negotiate and sign a domestic partnership or cohabitation agreement covering many of the same issues that are addressed by marriage and divorce laws.
My New Albany law firm drafts domestic partnership agreements for unmarried couples. If you would like to learn more, please contact my office to schedule a free initial consultation.
Domestic partnership agreements can cover a wide range of issues that frequently arise in civil unions, including:
Health Care – Who will be responsible for providing health insurance for both partners and any children?
Property Distribution – In the event of separation, who gets the house? Who gets the car and any other property?
Child Care – In the event of separation, what factors will determine who gets primary custody of any children? Will the other parent still have input into issues like religious upbringing, education and health care?
Financial Matters – If one partner does not work, how will income be divided? Under what circumstances will one partner give financial support to the other in the event of separation?
Retirement Benefits – Without a legal marriage, the partners cannot share each other’s retirement benefits without a written domestic partnership agreement.
What if We Are Separating but We Don’t Have a Domestic Partnership Agreement?
If you are fighting with your partner during a separation but never created a domestic partnership agreement, I may still be able to help. However, it is much more difficult (and costly) to enforce domestic partnership rights without a written and signed agreement.
I am available to guide unmarried couples through the process of creating a comprehensive and fair domestic partnership agreement. The best time to do this is during the “honeymoon” phase of the relationship, or at least before the couple has shared any major life events like purchasing a home or having or adopting children.
Contact us to get started on your domestic partnership agreement today. Immediate appointments are available.