If you live with your partner but aren’t married or in a civil partnership, you might wonder – what are your cohabitation rights? That is to say, what happens if you split up and you don’t legally own the property? Can you be thrown out? If you have children together, what happens to the child? These are all very import questions and the reason we are taking a look at what are your cohabitation rights.

A lot of your rights will often depend on your own personal circumstances, so it’s hard to give definitive guidance and these points should therefore be taken with caution and you should take legal advice for more detailed information.

In general, a person who isn’t married or part of a civil partnership or otherwise has no legal rights over another person or their property. You are treated as two completely separate people. That is to say that if you live with your partner and aren’t married, they are able to ask you leave the property at any time. Also, should something happen to them, you wouldn’t have any automatic legal rights by way of inheritance or otherwise to stay in the property.

If you are married, this is obviously different, as you then are no longer a cohabitant and the property may form part of your martial property and be treated differently.

So what if you aren’t married but have children to gather? What are your cohabitation rights then? Here is where things get more complicated, but in essence, your child will have a right to a place to live and this may, depending on circumstances, grant you some kind of access to the property.

In circumstances where you have contributed financially to the property but technically have no legal ownership, then you still may be entitled to some portion of the property under the laws of equity. This would likely be assessed by individual facts and to what extent financial contributions were made.

When it comes to your home, you can’t take your rights lightly, so it’s important to understand where you stand and what will happen in the event of an accident or other similar situation. So now you know what are your cohabitation rights you can start to prepare accordingly.

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