Keeping Company

Dear Hal-
I am a widower, 73 years old and have been “keeping company” with a lovely woman in her late 60s. We are thinking about moving in together as we have been seeing each other of over a year now. It seems to make a lot sense financially to have just one house and share expenses. However, my children have been pushing me to get some sort of, “agreement” with my lady before we take this step. It just seems very cold and unromantic and I’m not sure it is really necessary. Your thoughts?
Legally Lazy FL
Dear Lazy-
I understand your children’s concern even if you don’t. Without knowing the specifics of your financial situation, it is likely that you have some assets and estate plans that you want carried out when you pass away (as does your lady). In many states, living together (co-habitation) can be taken as a type of legal partnership and can impact your financial plans in the event of a death or even a separation. Co-habitation agreements (co-habs) are sometimes advisable in certain states and in certain circumstance. Although it is not romantic, you should discuss the advisability of creating such a agreement with an attorney. These things work to the benefit of both parties and can also include health-care decisions as well as monetary concerns. It is a touchy issue but one that merits both of your serious consideration as it has implications that extend beyond your own lifetimes.
Good luck!

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