Wednesday, July 16, 2014

No-nup agreements: contracts for cohabitation

The NY Times has a story on contracts that some unmarried couples are signing: All the Conventional Cohabitation, but No Nuptials

"With more couples choosing to live together without marrying — the Census Bureau estimates that more than eight million couples were cohabiting in the United States in 2013, up from five  million in 2006 — the potential pool of clients for these types of agreements is far from small.
Maria Cognetti, president of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, said most of the clients who ask for a cohabitation agreement have gone through marriage and divorce, and are in no hurry to revisit the travails of that journey. “They don’t want to get remarried, but they want the protection a pre-nup would provide,” said Ms. Cognetti, a divorce lawyer in Camp Hill, Pa.
Mr. Hertz said that behavioral stipulations, such as so-called weight clauses, are becoming obsolete, and any reference to intimate acts could render the agreement null and void due to prostitution laws and no-fault rules. “Agreements between unmarried couples are becoming more like marital agreements, and are equally ‘no-fault’ when it comes to allocating assets,” Mr. Hertz explained in an email. Mr. Hertz said fewer same-sex couples are seeking cohabitation agreements now that marriage has become an option for them in many states.

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