"Who will pay for what?"

Who pays for what may depend on who owns the property and who can afford to pay for any outgoings. Ideally, you should discuss this and agree who will pay for what from the outset and include those decisions in a cohabitation or living together agreement .

You are legally responsible for any bills, contracts, loans and credit cards taken out in your sole name, even if they were taken out for the benefit of the family.  If your name is on the mortgage or the utility bills, the providers will expect you to pay the bills and not your partner. 

There are some outgoings, like council tax, where your partner may be considered liable if he or she has been living in the property for some time, but these are the exception to the rule. 

If one of you already owns the property and the bills have been set up before your partner moves in, it is still very important to discuss what the each of you will pay and the implications this will have.  This should be included your cohabitation agreement. 

It is particularly important that both of you decide whether the new partner will pay anything towards the mortgage. If one partner claims they are entitled to the property because they have been directly or indirectly contributing to the mortgage repayments but the other person does not agree, this may lead to disputes

The best way to avoid disputes is to agree who will pay what and record that agreement in writing in a cohabitation agreement

Expert legal advice

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