Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog

Editor: Gerry W. Beyer
Texas Tech Univ. School of Law

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Cohabitation for Couples over 50

CohabitFrom 2007 to 2016, the percentage of people over 50 years old who cohabit with an unmarried partner jumped 75%. Even so, the number over age 65 doubled. This trend can partly be attributed to the sheer size of the baby boomer cohort and its rising divorce rate. Cohabitation in later life brings companionship, sexual intimacy, and wider social circles at ages when isolation is more common. Economic stability is also improved, as these elders pool their resources into a common household. On the other hand, marrying or remarrying can negatively affect government and pension benefits. Other issues like documenting end-of-life intentions, designating health care decision-makers, and writing wills are more important for married couples due to the potential of state laws not carrying out specific preferences. So, married or not commitment in later life represents hope for the future.

See Paula Span, More Older Couples Are ‘Shacking Up’, N.Y. Times, May 8, 2017.

Special thanks to Lewis Saret (Attorney, Washington, D.C.) & Jim Hillhouse (Professional Legal Marketing (PLM, Inc.)) for bringing this article to my attention.  


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