There are many ways in which property related matters also have a family law dimension, most commonly when couples purchase property together. The Thompson Smith and Puxon Family and Divorce team explain.

Generally, when a couple purchase a property in their joint names, their conveyancing lawyer should discuss with them what share of the property each is to own, particularly if one party is contributing more than the other to the purchase price.

Any couple wishing to own property in unequal shares should raise this with their solicitor at the time of purchase and enter into a Declaration of Trust. Quite simply, this is a legal document recording the manner in which the property is held and the shares owned individually by each party.

If the couple plan to live together outside of marriage or civil partnership then they should also consider preparing a Living Together or Cohabitation Agreement with the assistance of a specialist family lawyer. This can, amongst other things, set out how the mortgage repayments and utility bills will be paid, how any joint bank account will run, responsibility for structural repairs and renovations, and what will happen to the property should the relationship unfortunately break down.

For more information about joint ownership please click here.

The team advise clients on all aspects of private family law. They can be contacted on 01206 574431 or by email at