The categorization of adult interdependent relationships is meant to facilitate the equal treatment of “common law couples” as if they were married, with certain exceptions. If you are in an adult interdependent partnership, this may assist you in dealing with your spouse’s estate if they die, dealing with insurance companies, or applying for social assistance. However, it may not give you the same rights as a married person for tax purposes or division of property.
In Alberta, you are in an adult interdependent partnership, if:
- you have lived with the other person in a relationship of interdependence for a continuous period of not less than 3 years; or
- you have lived with the other person in a relationship of interdependence of some permanence, if there is a child of the relationship by birth or adoption.
If you don’t fall into one of the categories above, you can still be in an adult interdependent partnership by entering into an Adult Interdependent Partnership Agreement with the other person pursuant to the regulations set out in the Adult Interdependent Relationships Act.
Although it is not necessary, we still strongly recommend that you receive independent legal advice prior to signing your Adult Interdependent Partnership Agreement . For example, there are certain restrictions on entering into an Adult Interdependent Partnership Agreement. You cannot enter into an Adult Interdependent Partnership Agreement if:
- you are under the age of 18 (unless you are over 16 years old and have your guardians’ consent);
- you have a signed Adult Interdependent Partnership Agreement with someone else; or
- you are married.
Let Oakley Family Law help draft your agreement, or contact us after the agreement is already written, to provide that independent legal advice you need and to advise you of your rights, responsibilities and any possible unforeseen consequences under the agreement you’ve written. Contact us online or call us today at 587-943-1394.
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