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cohabitating

Many Couples Tackle Mortgage Before Marriage

Many couples are purchasing their first home together before tying the knot, according to new research released last week. 

Approximately 25 percent of couples aged 18 to 34 are opting to purchase their first home before getting married, compared with 14 percent of married couples aged 45 and older according to a recent Coldwell Banker Real Estate survey. 

According to data collected, 80 percent of couples said a home purchased strengthened their bond more than any other purchase they had made. 

Coupled with recent information from the Centers for Disease Control, the trend of cohabitating before marriage has been quantified. The CDC data showed that from 2006 through 2010, 48 percent of women in the United States between the ages of 15 to 44 said they cohabitated with a romantic partner without walking down the aisle. 

The survey collected data from 2,116 adults from March 8-12, 2013. 

The implications of buying a home before legally marrying could have serious ramifications, however. Buying a house together can give you equal ownership, but not joint ownership of the property, meaning that if one of the pair dies, their share of the property would get passed onto any heirs of theirs and not the significant other. 

Other issues arise if the couple splits and doesn't get married as well. Then they both own a property with someone they do not want to be with anymore and they have to agree what they will do with it. 

If you are considering getting married, you may want to discuss your situation with a St. Louis family lawyer to make sure your bases are covered. Call today for your free, initial consultation.

Majority Of Women Cohabitate Before Age 30

The majority of women have lived with a partner without being married by age 30 according to a new survey released this week. 

According to researchers at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 40 percent of unmarried partners continued on to marriage within three years. The report studied survey of more than 12,000 women between the ages of 15 and 44. Researchers also found that about 33 percent of those partnerships continued to stay together without marrying and another 27 percent saw their relationships break up. 

According to the report, more people are putting off marriage due to finances or because they view it as financially risky. Forty-eight percent of women surveyed lived with a partner as a first union, which is a 14 percent increase since 1995. Only 23 percent of first unions were marriages compared with 39 percent in 1995. 

Education played a role in the likelihood a woman would live with a partner before marriage. Nearly 70 percent of women without a high school diploma lived with a partner as their first union compared with 47 percent of women with bachelor's degrees. Women who didn't graduate high school were less likely to marry within three years compared with those who graduated high school. 

Also 20 percent of women became pregnant in the first year of living with a partner and only five percent of college-educated women got pregnant within that time period. 

If you would like to review more of the researchers' findings, check out the report on the CDC site. 

If you are in need of a Missouri family lawyer, give our office a call today for your free, initial consultation.

Consider Legal Papers If Cohabitating

More and more heterosexual couples are cohabitating and delaying marrying or deciding against walking down the aisle altogether to be legally wed.

While that works for many, skipping the "I dos" can create more hassles in the event of a break up if financial ground rules were not laid out ahead of time. 

According to the U.S. Census, the number of unwed married couples jumped to 7.5 million opposite-sex couples percent in the past decade. While some of that is attributed to economic difficulties, many are a shift in society's view of relationships. 

An article on Foxbusiness.com discusses what unwed couples need to do financially to protect themselves and advises such a relationship needs to be thought of as a business relationship. 

The author interviews an expert who discusses what specific aspects should be discussed and kept separate, including keeping property like your vehicle in your name and keeping financial accounts, loans and credit cards separate.  

Since there is not a specific legal framework for cohabitating couples to divide assets should the relationship break up, it may be wise to discuss specific financial aspects with a family attorney and set legal groundwork that would clarify asset division should the relationship break up. 

If you are interested in setting up financial arrangements for a serious relationship, contact our office today. 

Contact Us

Jeffrey A. Heater
Attorney at Law

5205 Hampton Ave.
St. Louis, MO 63109

Phone: (314) 541-7421

Fax: (314) 932-7672

jeff@heaterlaw.com

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