Marriage Contracts and Cohabitation Agreements


Marriage Contracts

A marriage contract is a legal document created either before or during the marriage that describes in detail what will happen if a couple separates, or if one or both members of the couple dies. How will the assets and debts be divided? What happens to the children? How much will be paid or received in spousal support? Many people refer to marriage contracts as prenuptial agreements.

At Hills Nolan, our lawyers will help you work through the issues involved in a marriage contract, including:

  • Ownership in or division of property, including assets and debts
  • Support obligations, including child support and spousal support (alimony)
  • The right to direct the education and moral training of their children, but not the right to custody of or access to their children
  • What becomes of the marital home

We believe marital agreements make sense for anyone who is getting married. They can be especially important for those entering into second marriages, those with significant assets, and those who want to protect the inheritance rights of children from a first marriage or prior relationship. Our strong background and experience in both family law and estate planning allows us to give our clients sound, multi-faceted legal advice in both simple and complicated marital agreements.

Cohabitation Agreements

A cohabitation agreement is similar to a marriage agreement. It deals with the same issues as a marriage contract, however, the legal issues are different for cohabiting couples than for married couples.

For the purposes of a cohabitation agreement, you are considered common law spouses if you have lived together continuously for three years or if you are parents of a child. There is no distinction between same-sex and opposite-sex couples.


Our law firm drafts, reviews and enforces the terms of domestic contracts. To arrange a consultation, send us an e-mail or call 1 905-571-1774. From our offices in Oshawa we represent clients throughout the Durham Region of Ontario.