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Buying a home with a cohabiting partner

A large number of couples in Texas as well as throughout the country are choosing to cohabit either as a step towards marriage or in lieu of it. Some of these couples may also consider purchasing homes together, but doing so may not be a good idea. If a couple does decide to move forward with purchasing a home while they are unmarried, there are a few things they might want to do in order to protect their interests.

When a couple divorces, their property will be divided between them according to Texas laws on marital property division. These laws help to make certain that each spouse will receive his or her fair share of the assets that have been acquired during the marriage. When a couple is unmarried and separate, they do not have the protections afforded by divorce property division laws. Instead, the assets purchased in one partner's name will remain his or her own. Dividing property that is jointly owned may also cause problems.

If a couple wants to purchase a home together while they are unmarried, they should consider writing out a formal contract that details the amounts each will be responsible for paying and how the home will be handled in the event their relationship ends. Another alternative option is for one partner to buy the home in his or her name only and write a contract calling for the other partner to pay monthly rent in an amount that is fair.

Divorce matters can be highly complex, especially when a couple has accumulated substantial assets both prior to and during their marriage. A person who is cohabiting and who wishes to marry may want to consider drafting a prenuptial agreement in order to protect the assets he or she has accumulated before the marriage. This may help protect him or her in the event the marriage does not last.

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Bruce Turner

In addition to his law degree, Bruce Turner has a master's degree in tax law and is Board Certified in Commercial Real Estate Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization.

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Turner, Bruce E.
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Bruce Turner with Bennett, Weston LaJone & Turner, P.C.

Attorney Bruce Turner is located in Dallas and represents people and businesses throughout DFW and the Metroplex, including Denton, Carrollton, Lewisville, Flower Mound, Farmers Branch, Irving, Las Colinas, Corinth, Highland Village, The Colony, Plano, Frisco, Allen, McKinney, Mesquite, Grand Prairie, Garland and Grapevine as well as Collin County, Denton County and Dallas County in Texas.

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