Although same-sex marriage was legalized in the state of Colorado in 2014, there are still reasons why couples (same-sex or opposite-sex) may elect to engage in cohabitation and long-term romantic relationships without getting legally married. Perhaps one partner has excessive debts that the other is hesitant to take responsibility for, or maybe the couple would be subject to tax penalties of some sort if they were to marry, just for example.
For parties that live together and act as a married couple in everything but name, domestic partnerships are an option for legal recognition of the relationship. An experienced family lawyer can help you to understand the potential benefits and drawbacks of domestic partnership, as well as legal avenues to protect the rights of a domestic partner.
Small enough to care and knowledgeable to know what they are doing.Mary J.
In the state of Colorado, domestic partnerships differ from marriages in a variety of ways. Parties may register as committed partners, but this does not provide for name changes and does not affect legal and financial rights related to property, contract, inheritance, custody, benefits, or other legal entitlements related to marriage. Essentially, all you get from registering a domestic partnership is a public record of the relationship and proof that you meet requirements for a committed partnership.
Couples can choose to register as domestic partners if they are:
- At least 18 years of age
- Unmarried, uninvolved in a civil union, and not already involved in another domestic partnership
- Competent to enter into a contract
- Sharing a common household
- Not prohibited from marriage due to blood relationship or adoption, under Colorado state law
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