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What is a cohabitation agreement?

For same-sex couples, the term cohabitation agreement may crop up frequently. It is a viable alternative for couples that do not have the ability to marry. It can come in handy especially in states where gay marriage has not yet been legalized. But what is a cohabitation agreement?

The Farlex Legal Dictionary defines a cohabitation agreement as a living situation that is like marriage without actually being married. A couple will live together, share the same house, sometimes split bills or bank accounts, and share all other aspects of a long-term relationship. The only difference is that they do not have the same benefits that married couples have because they have not legally tied the knot yet. There are nearly 3 million couples living together under cohabitation agreements rather than marriage as of the year 1990, showing that it is a somewhat popular option for couples who are facing legal marriage issues or otherwise don’t wish to marry.

While unmarried couples are usually allowed to live together without legal ramifications, there are some areas that abide by Zoning laws. This can make it illegal for three or more people who are unrelated to live together. Additionally, some states prohibit sexual intercourse between unmarried couples. However, these laws are not enforced. They may still make it more difficult for a couple to live under a cohabitation agreement, so it is a good thing to keep in mind.

While this is the preferred option for some people, it is sometimes the only option for gay or lesbian couples. Because of that, it is a decent possibility for any couple who wishes to get married but currently lives in a state where gay marriage is prohibited.

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Lorrie J. Zahodnic

"I will hold you up until you can stand on your own two feet."

Lorrie J. Zahodnic, P.C. has provided skilled and compassionate legal guidance to Michiganders in family law matters for over 20 years.

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