Nobody goes into a relationship expecting it not to work out and the thought of having a conversation with your partner about your life plans can seem daunting or unromantic, especially in the early stages of a relationship.
Shoosmiths 2Unify service offers legal expertise alongside relationship coaching to lay the foundations for a strong and secure relationship. This service will help you to address the practicalities of living together. Whether that is starting a family, combining your finances, thinking about your career aspirations or blending two households, our team will guide and support you as you plan your future together.
Your plans and wishes can be given legal effect through a cohabitation or nuptial agreement. Such agreements enable you to specify how you will deal with financial and practical issues in the event that you separate in future, protecting both parties, whilst also reducing the stress, uncertainty and cost of having to unravel your affairs should the worst happen.
Pre and post-nuptial agreements
If there is no agreement in place, a principle of equal sharing will apply as the starting point to all assets, regardless of their source. A nuptial agreement can ensure that the interests of you and your wider family are safeguarded, particularly if family businesses, trusts or inherited assets are involved. As well as protecting assets, these agreements also allow you the freedom to plan what will happen to your finances, rather than leaving it to chance or for a court to decide. They also provide a level of clarity and certainty for any children or dependents.
Couples who live together but don’t marry have very few rights or protections, which could create difficulties if you split up. A cohabitation agreement can remove uncertainty by recording the financial and practical arrangements you want to make for one another in the event of a separation. It can specify the shares in which you own a property and how to deal with any future financial contributions you make. It can also set out how you will both support any children and take decisions regarding their upbringing, as well as provide for the payment of household expenses and education costs.
Shoosmiths 2Unify coaching
Our qualified coaches will work with you in a safe, non-judgemental way, to explore your wishes and feelings on a range of issues. With the support of a neutral third party, you may find it easier to discuss subjects that could otherwise be uncomfortable, or that you may not have considered, such as:
- Your relationship goals and aspirations
- Sharing your future prosperity
- Protecting the assets introduced at the start of your relationship
- Dealing with trust funds or other types of inheritance
- Ensuring family assets and heirlooms remain within the family
- Addressing the practical arrangements for blending two families
- Care arrangements and financial provision for existing or future children
- Arrangements for the education of your children
- Living arrangements for international families
- Inheritance and estate planning
Not every couple will need or want relationship coaching, but if you are entering into an agreement and there are sticking points that you’re struggling to find a way through, coaching can help. Our goal is for you to enter into an agreement not only knowing what you are agreeing to, but also understanding how you truly feel about issues that may influence your attitudes or behaviour now and in the future.
Another benefit of coaching is that it may reduce your legal costs; if you can discuss and agree the content of your agreement this will reduce the input needed by your lawyers.
Both of you should be properly and independently represented by a lawyer. All coaching sessions are completely confidential and independent of your lawyers. We offer a free initial consultation to discuss whether relationship coaching is right for you. If you’d like to know more about Shoosmiths 2Unify coaching, or you’d like advice on nuptial or cohabitation agreements, please contact us on +44(0) 3700 868 686 or email us at [email protected]