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Cohabitation

The term "cohabitation" refers to people who are living together without being married. Couples of different or the same sex can cohabitate.

Cohabitation Termination Presents Issues

Under Wisconsin law, cohabitation is not a recognized marriage, regardless of the duration or nature of the relationship. Wisconsin does not recognize common law marriage nor any type of relationship between people other than marriage. For that reason, cohabitants cannot terminate their relationship through the normal termination of a marriage process, rather, they must rely upon Wisconsin's contract and other laws that govern the termination of a relationship and to divide property, and debt.

Cohabitation & Children

If a child was born at any time prior to, during, or after the relationship of unmarried partners, then Wisconsin support laws apply. The law concerning the children of same sex unmarried couples is likely to continue to evolve.

Property Rights Of People Living Together

For cohabitation relationships, termination of those relationships, division of property and debt acquired during the relationship, and support questions, Attorney Kathy Reiley has fast become the 'go to' person for lawyers and non-lawyers alike. For several years, Attorney Reiley has handled cohabitation dispute resolution and mediation, which are the usual methods for resolving the issues that arise for partners terminating their relationships.

Resolving Disputes Between Cohabitants

Unmarried cohabitants do not have the statutory structure available to resolve the issues concerning property and debt when they terminate the relationship that married parties have. The filing fee to commence the action is higher and they do not have the presumptions for property division to rely on. Alternative dispute resolution, including mediation and the collaborative process, are good options for saving time and money.

If you are in a cohabitating relationship that is coming to end, please call Attorney Kathleen Reiley (608-246-8309) or send Kathleen Reiley an email to set up a confidential meeting to discuss your options.

See Also:
Cohabitation Dispute Resolution | Mediation | Wisconsin Child Support
Attorney Kathleen Reiley | Family Law Overview

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Attorney Kathleen Reiley, S.C. © 2015 | Privacy Policy
2453 Atwood Ave., Suite 209
Madison, WI 53704
Phone: (608) 246-8309
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    Wisconsin Courts

    For a complete list of the courts where Attorney Kathleen Reiley most frequently appears, please visit the Wisconsin Circuit Courts page (in Wisconsin, divorce and family law matters are heard in the circuit courts).

    Dane County

    Madison, WI and surrounding area - Belleville, Black Earth, Blue Mounds, Brooklyn, Cambridge, Cottage Grove, Cross Plains, Dane, Deerfield, DeForest, Fitchburg, McFarland, Maple Bluff, Marshall, Mazomanie, Middleton, Monona, Mount Horeb, Oregon, Rockdale, Shorewood Hills, Stoughton, Sun Prairie, Verona, Waunakee, Windsor

    Columbia County

    Arlington, Cambria, Columbus, Doylestown, Fall River, Friesland, Lake Wisconsin, Lodi, Pardeeville, Portage, Poynette, Randolph, Rio, Wisconsin Dells, Wyocena

    Dodge County

    Beaver Dam, Brownsville, Clyman, Columbus, Fox Lake, Hartford, Horicon, Hustisford, Iron Ridge, Juneau, Kekoskee, Lomira, Lowell, Mayville, Neosho, Randolph, Reeseville, Theresa, Watertown, Waupun

    Green County

    Albany, Belleville, Brodhead, Brooklyn, Browntown, Monticello, New Glarus

    Iowa County

    Arena, Avoca, Barneveld, Blanchardville, Cobb, Dodgeville, Highland, Hollandale, Linden, Livingston, Mineral Point, Montfort, Muscoda, Rewey, Ridgeway

    Jefferson County

    Cambridge, Fort Atkinson, Hebron, Helenville, Ixonia, Jefferson, Johnson Creek, Lake Koshkonong, Lake Lac La Belle, Lake Mills, Lake Ripley, Palmyra, Rome, Sullivan, Waterloo, Watertown, Whitewater

    Juneau County

    Camp Douglas, Elroy, Hustler, Lyndon Station, Mauston, Necedah, New Lisbon, Union Center, Wonewoc

    Lafayette County

    Albany, Belleville, Brodhead, Brooklyn, Browntown, Monticello, New Glarus

    Marquette County

    Endeavor, Montello, Neshkoro, Oxford, Westfield

    Richland County

    Boaz, Cazenovia, Lone Rock, Richland Center, Viola, Yuba

    Sauk County

    Baraboo, Cazenovia, Ironton, Lake Delton, Lake Wisconsin, La Valle, Lime Ridge, Loganville, Merrimac, North Freedom, Plain, Prairie du Sac, Reedsburg, Rock Springs, Sauk City, Spring Green, West Baraboo, Wisconsin Dells


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