We are not married but own property together. What are my legal rights?

For cohabiatated unwed couples, you have rights to take legal action on your property. 

When two people cohabitate with one another, ending a relationship can make matters messy.

One of the most frequent question I am asked is “what are the legal rights of unmarried individuals?” Or, “are unwed couples entitled to any commingled assets he or she may have with their respective significant other?”

The answer is yes. Although unwed individuals may not have as many legal rights as those who are married, Florida law does provide some rights and relief.

Let’s take a home for example. Say Betty and Fred, an unwed couple, are both listed on the home’s deed and mortgage as Joint Tenants. Unfortunately, the two end their relationship and Fred remains in the home. Several months following Betty’s departure, Fred stops paying the mortgage. What is Betty to do?

Well, when two or more people own a single piece of property, or a home in this instance, and cannot agree as to how it should be used (i.e. one or the other remains in the home), Florida law steps in to control the situation. Pursuant to Florida’s Statute, Betty will have the right to motion the court to force a sale of the home. That way, her name is removed from the liability of the home and both are entitled to a portion of the proceeds.

If you have any questions related to cohabitation, or require legal assistance in other areas of Domestic Relations or Family Law, you may always contact Damien McKinney of The McKinney Law Group to discuss your case further. He can be reached by phone at 813-428-3400 or by e-mail at contact@themckinneylawgroup.com.

Damien McKinney

The McKinney Law Group, 1105 West Swann Avenue, Tampa, FL, 33606, United States

Damien has practiced in of all aspects of marital and family law for his entire career and offers a rare commodity, a lawyer dedicated solely to his area of practice.