Coupled up in a long term relationship, but not interested in marriage? Maybe you even have kids? I get it. Totally. Same here.
The thing is, unmarried couples do not enjoy the same automatic rights and benefits that married couples do. For example, if you or your partner is hospitalized, the doctors do not have to talk to you about your partner’s situation and vice versa. And what if you are incapacitated and can’t tell the doctors that you want your partner to be able to speak with them and help make health care decisions for you while you are unable to do so? In the absence of marriage and without the proper legal documents in place, your partner would not be able to advocate for you or otherwise be involved in your health care decision making. Spouses enjoy these benefits, but unmarried couples do not.
Additionally, what if the worst happened, and your partner died unexpectedly? Without certain protections in place, like a will, your partner’s parents– if still living– would as a matter of law, get your partner’s stuff. And vice versa. If you died with no will in place, your partner would have no legal right to your stuff, or potentially the stuff you two acquired together.
These few circumstances above demonstrate the need for unmarried committed couples to have a plan in place for certain contingencies so that your relationship is respected and recognized. There are simple ways to accomplish this through the use of a will, a power of attorney for healthcare and other legal documents which this office can help you create.
Bottom line–Stick it to the Man! Smash the patriarchy! Don’t get married— but do it in a smart way so that you, your partner, and your relationship are respected and recognized. Contact this office to help you put all the things in place now so you don’t have to worry later.
And keep fighting the good fight! 😉