Chicago Domestic Partnership Agreement Lawyers
The Importance of a Domestic Partnership Agreement
Just as there are many alternatives to choose from when dissolving your marriage, there are many different alternatives to marriage. Today, many couples may decide to live together for many years without ever getting married. With the recent Supreme Court ruling, all states in the U.S. now permit same-sec marriage, which many states did not allow for beforehand. This new ruling allows same-sex couples to have the same legal protection as heterosexual couples.
However, Georgia law does not guarantee the same rights to non-married couples as it does married couples. Georgia does recognize some common law marriages, but there are strict rules that must be followed. Rights for non-married couples in Georgia are not abrogated no matter how long the couple has been together or the kind of relationship. A Georgia domestic partnership agreement is not a marriage contract, but it can afford the couple many of the same marital protections or protections that are given in a pre-nuptial agreement.
Domestic Partnership Agreement
A domestic partnership agreement can address any legal issue the couple finds important, though most domestic partnership agreements are developed to protect you and your partner in light of complex life and legal issues. The domestic agreement may cover legal issues and obligations, including shared property, businesses, bank accounts, and other important assets. Additionally, the agreement may cover power of attorney designations, child custody and adoption, estate and will distribution after death, and the dissolution of the domestic partnership.
Georgia adoption law allows for a co-parent to adopt a partner’s child, even if the child is over 18. This ensures that the non-parent partner will have custody over the child in case the birth parent dies or is incapacitated in any manner. This form of adoption may be a good option for a couple instead of or in addition to addressing child custody and adoption in the domestic partnership plan.
If an unmarried couple decides to cohabitate, then the couple should consider adding a cohabitation agreement to the domestic partnership agreement. The cohabitation agreement will usually focus on what happens to the couple if the partnership is dissolved. The cohabitation will also discuss how the family home, furniture, and other family assets are divided if the partnership is dissolved. This additional agreement will cover child custody and child care as well if needed. Keep in mind, Georgia law does not have an adequate court process to handle domestic disputes between unmarried couples, so a domestic partnership agreement is an efficient way to plan for the future.
Protecting You and Your Family
If you can prevent legal problems before they can occur is priceless. Domestic partnership agreements and planning for any future legal problems you may have helps to save you and your partner time, money, and a lot of stress later on. Planning for the future through a domestic partnership agreement can help to strengthen your relationship and help you eliminate panic in the time of an emergency. Developing and implementing a domestic partnership plan is not only an agreement to protect your family and a smart financial move, but it is also an affirmation of the love in your relationship.
The Atlanta family law lawyers at Bushnell & Drye, LLC have years of experience in family law and want to help you keep your family protected. Our attorneys will help you develop a domestic partnership agreement or other legal documents that may be more appropriate in your situation. Contact us today for an initial consultation about your legal circumstances and let us put our skill to work for you.