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Family law issues are not limited to married couples

Many California couples choose not to legally marry for years, if at all. However, they do choose to live together, buy property together and have children together. This means that they, too, can experience family law issues even though they are not married.

Whether a couple is married or not, talking about money is not always an easy task. However, it is just as important, if not more important, for couples who are not married since they are not afforded the same rights as a married couple. There could be significant consequences to each party's finances.

The parties should take the time to determine how mutual finances will be handled. If property is to be purchased, the parties need to determine how it will be titled in order to protect each other in the event of a break-up or the death of one party. Without legal protections provided through the manner in which the property is titled, estate planning or some other legal documentation, the property could end up with someone else. Therefore, it might be a good idea to negotiate an agreement between the parties for the division of property in case of a break-up, along with the execution of estate planning documents in case of death.

Unmarried couples here in California should consult an attorney about their family law issues in order to ensure that the foundation of their relationship is set. Any agreements negotiated and executed as a result could help forestall any financial issues between the parties. As would be the case with married couples, discussing finances in advance of taking any further steps could help keep the relationship intact by eliminating one potential source of contention.

Source: npr.org, "For Couples Skipping The Ring, It Pays To Plot Out Finances", Heidi Glenn, April 17, 2016

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16255 Ventura Boulevard, Suite 1015
Encino, CA 91436

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