Many couples live together as de facto couples without formalising their relationship by getting married.

In fact, if you do this, you should known that under current law you have the same legal rights as married couples, provided you have lived together for at least 2 years.

If you and you partner are living together, we recommend you get advice to protect your assets in the event of a relationship breakdown. We can draft a cohabitation agreement (also known as Binding Financial Agreements – BFA). This agreement will record your intentions about your assets. It will cover the financial and property aspects of your relationship and how the assets would be divided in the event of the relationship ending. Cohabitation agreements sometimes include or specifically exclude provision for spousal maintenance in the event of a relationship breakdown.

As your assets grow, and the respective contributions of you and your partner change over the course of time, you may need to update your Cohabitation Agreement.

If you and your partner’s relationship dissolves, we are able to deal with any legal issues that arise.

If you are in a de facto relationship you will need a properly drafted Will. You should also reflect on the fact that a Will is able to be challenged by a de facto partner or in some circumstances a former de facto partner.