TERMINATION OF A COHABITATION RELATIONSHIP
When people who are not married end their relationship, the principle of dividing all property by half does not apply in the sense that it does for former spouses who were married in community of property. The rules of law prescribing in case of a divorce how former spouses are to divide or settle their property, do not apply for people who split up, but were not married. It is possible, however, to make arrangements in a cohabitation contract about the way property is to be divided or settled when the relationship comes to an end.
When people live together, either with or without a contract, they should, briefly put, be aware of the fact that there are many things that will have to be taken care of/arranged when they split up. Here are some examples of situations they may find themselves in/issues they may come across:
– If there is no cohabitation contract, only the property that is registered in both partners’ names will be joint property;
– When married people, or partners in a registered partnership end their relationship; there is a statutory right to spousal/partner maintenance. This is not the case for people who end their relationship but were not married. Only if people living together have agreed such a duty of partner maintenance# in a cohabitation contract, is there a possibility to claim partner maintenance;
– People who live together are not entitled to each other’s pensions even though some arrangements may have been made in relation to a partner’s pension (surviving dependant’s pension);
– Sometimes a house was bought in both partners’ names. This means the mortgage is also in both names. If the partners break up, the consequence will be that each partner is fully liable for the mortgage debt, also when this mortgage had been related even if the mortgage had been geared to one partner’s income.
– There is no automatic authority over the children, as is the case when people are married or in a registered partnership.
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