COMMON LAW COUPLE AND PROPERTY
If you are living in a common law relationship its important to know that you do not enjoy the same automatic rights that a married couple does. However, given the changing nature of a common law relationship certain rights may be altered.
Of biggest concern for a common law couple should be property. Here, if Fred Flintstone and Marge Simpson a common law couple, have decided to live in Fred’s home that he owns and is on title. Marge, will not have property rights to Fred’s home. If years later, Marge and Fred have a child and live as though they are a married couple, Marge will still not have automatic ownership to the home.
WHAT IS A JOINT FAMILY VENTURE?
If Marge wants to assert a claim to the home, she will have to claim a constructive trust. To succeed, Marge will have to demonstrate that the family unit was operating as a joint family venture. The definition for a joint family venture is expansive. However, in plain terms, were you living and acting like a family. There are a number of factors a court would consider. Did Marge contribute financially to the home? Are Marge and Fred raising their child, as if it was a family home? Are significant decisions made together? How does the couple treat their relationship for taxation purposes?
There are numerous additional factors a court would consider as well.
COMMON LAW COUPLE GETS MARRIED
If Fred who owns the home with Marge cohabiting with him, suddenly decide to get married. Things can change for the couple. Now, Marge will have an equal entitlement to the home. Even if she had not put any money towards the home. Now the home will be classified as a matrimonial home.
I AM IN A COMMON LAW RELATIONSHIP HOW DO I PROTECT MYSELF?
If you are in a common law relationship there are ways in which you can protect yourself. Most common is a cohabitation agreement.
FAMILY LAWYER NEAR ME IN BURLINGTON?
Are you looking for a family law lawyer in Burlington or Oakville? Call my office.
My address is 901 Guelph Line, Burlington.
You can also call or text at 416-505-4901 OR call Toll Free: 1 (800) 939-9211