The Next Chapter

Divorce Resources for Women

Pros and Cons of Cohabitation Versus Marriage in California

Share with a friend
 

Orange County divorce mediation; California Divorce MediatorsThe subject of whether marriage better or cohabitation warrants a lot of debate based on people’s personal experiences and beliefs. There are some who believe nothing can replace a marriage in a loving relationship, while others beg to differ and believe that cohabitation is equally amazing without the legality of marriage. We discuss some of the benefits and disadvantages of cohabitation over marriage.

Pros of cohabitation over marriage 

  • One of the most obvious benefits is that you get to share your home and life with someone you love and like to be around because you love the person and not because of legality binding you.
  • Cohabiting has all the financial benefits of being in a marriage without the legal hassles that come with marriage. You get to split costs, manage finances, and invest together with your partner.
  • Cohabiting can be a great way to understand if you and your partner can sustain a marriage. It is a good way to know how well you both work together as a couple living together before taking the plunge and getting married.

Cons of cohabitation over marriage 

  • There is some research that shows that marriage may have physical and psychological benefits that are lacking in cohabitation. However, some results are still ambiguous about the reasons behind these differences.
  • There is no legal responsibility or hassle, making it easier to leave a cohabitation arrangement. Marriage demands more legal commitment and, therefore, there is more thought given before a spouse decides to leave.
  • If you have kids while cohabiting, custody rights can become complicated if you decide to go your separate ways, as there is no clear legality.

Cohabitation in California 

California does not recognize common law marriage except when a couple is considered married under common law marriage in a state that recognizes it and then moves to California. California recognizes cohabitation as a legal form of relationship, and there are some provisions for couples who wish to cohabit but not marry.

If you are cohabiting to test your relationship before getting married, you can enter a prenuptial or premarital agreement that lists rules and laws applicable to you as a couple once you get married.

If you simply wish to cohabit without the legal hassles of marriage, then the state has a provision of getting a cohabitation agreement, also known as a nonmarital agreement. This formal agreement lists out responsibilities and rights for the cohabiting couple and works as a contract that is outside of marriage laws.

To learn more about the divorce process in California and how mediation can help, please visit our page, What is Divorce Mediation

divorce_attorney Gerald A. Maggio is a trained Orange County divorce mediator who has amicably resolved cases many cases out of court, as well as an experienced divorce and family law attorney. Mr. Maggio founded California Divorce Mediators in 2012 with the belief that although “not every marriage can be saved, every family can” and a mission to save families from the financial and emotional distress associated with traditional divorce litigation. California Divorce Mediators is located in Irvine, California, and serves the Orange County area and other counties in California offering divorce mediation, child custody mediation and mediation of other family law matters.

 

Comments are closed.