Morally cohabitating

Given the cost of living including the cost of medical insurance, what are the moral issues of cohabitating. Assuming two people are friends and not romantically interested but have over the years developed a close family type relationship. I assume there is no problem with them being room mates (separate bed rooms) and sharing the cost of a house. But what if one has great insurance and the other doesn’t? Most companies will also cover the persons spouse and dependents but not adults other than “spouses”. Unfortunately the definition of spouse keeps getting degraded in the secular world to the point of any adult relation. Does the church have any opinion on taking in a person in need and establishing a formal, but celebate relationship so as to take advantage of ecconomic opportunities?

Do you mean using the sacrament of marriage to save money on insurance?

If that’s what you mean and are implying, the church indeed does have an opinion. Marriage is something that two people enter into for the greater purpose of raising a family, procreating and raising those children up to be Godly people.

The sacraments are given to us by God to be a tangible sign of his love for us. If the sacraments are not used properly they are better not being used at all.

There are other (better) ways to help people in need :thumbsup:

I just said a prayer for you, I hope you find the answers to your questions and your needs.

In love and peace,

Assuming that the two people are of opposite sexes their living arrangement may be a source of scandal.

As far as the health insurance, companies don’t give that to roommates, they give it to domestic partners and that’s something different.

I just Googled to find an example of what domestic partnership includes. This is only one company (a university) but here is how they define a domestic partner:

Domestic partners must satisfy all of the following criteria:

* Have an exclusive mutual commitment, similar to that of marriage, but the partners cannot become legally married;
* Are each other's sole domestic partner and intend to remain so indefinitely;
* Neither partner is legally married;
* Are not related by blood to a degree of closeness which would prohibit legal marriage in the state in which the partners legally reside;
* Are at least eighteen (18) years of age and are legally competent to contract;
* Are currently residing together and have resided together in a common household for at least six (6) consecutive months and intend to reside together indefinitely;
* At least six (6) months have elapsed since the UHS Insurance Office has received a Statement of Termination of a previous domestic partnership from either partner; and
* Share joint responsibility for the partner's common welfare and financial obligations demonstrated by the existence of a domestic partner agreement and should have at least two other items showing joint responsibility, such as joint bank accounts, joint deed, mortgage agreement or lease, joint credit account or other liability, joint ownership of a motor vehicle, designation of domestic partner as primary beneficiary for life insurance or retirement contract(s), designation of domestic partner as primary beneficiary of will, durable property or health care power of attorney, co-parenting agreement, or an adoption agreement.)

I don’t think your roommate scenario would satisfy this. If you lied to qualify you’d be cheating/stealing from the employer.

It appears that what you are trying to do is some sort of sham. Either it is a sham “domestic partner” because you actually are not domestic partners, just room-mates. Or you really are not roommates, are having a romantic relationship and trying to fool people into believe you are chaste, but and really are domestic partners, which is a sham marriage. (No onw with an IQ larger than their shoe size will believe you are living with someone you love and are not having sex.)

So your questions is which sham, which lie, which sin, is more serious? Hmm, fraudulently claiming domestic partner status or a gravely sinful sexual relationship which you are claiming does not exist.

Personally, I am not sure. However, the first one will get you jail time.

You should not assume that which you do not know.

Give this person an answer to their question, not an accusation of things assumed.

I would encourage you to learn what “scandal” means. In addition, you may want to learn exactly what the sin of judgment actually entails.

I made no assumptions and I did give him an answer. To falsely claim that someone is a domestic partner, in those states where that is recognized, when the person is indeed nothing more than a good friend and roommate is fraud. That is a grave sin.

In order to carry out this fraud, they will have to convince people they are domestic partners, which, by it very nature, implies a sexual relationship. This creates scandal because people will assume, rightly or wrongly, they are not roommates, but co-habitating. So scandal is added to the list of sins.

The original poster was asking about the morality of committing fraud by having an implied sexual relationship with someone. There is no way the OP can arrange this with committing grave sins. And one of those also happens to be a serious crime.

Is this like the movie “Chuck and Larry”?

Is this type of agreement possible between people who are not romantically involved.

I never said anything about having an implied sexual relationship. On the contrary I was refering to a non romantic relationship.

And no I am not talking about fraud. I am talking about the expanded secular definition of a “family” and adult dependents who are not formally related.

No I was thinking about secular civil partnership. I was thinking about a few scenarios in my past where close friends and neighbors were in need of medical insurance and even though I have great coverage, there was nothing I could do to help them even though I thought of these people as family. If these people are too old to adopt, is there another way of bringing them into the family legaly. I am trying to be creative within the law and not go around it.

Two of the criteria I listed were:

*Have an exclusive mutual commitment, similar to that of marriage, but the partners cannot become legally married;

  • Are each other’s sole domestic partner and intend to remain so indefinitely;

What does that sound like to you? Maybe just the tiniest bit of a romantic, or more specifically, sexual relationship?

If you think that your roommate should be covered by your employer, why not be completely honest. Go to your human resources department and explain that you want to help someone who doesn’t have health insurance and ask for the forms to sign that person up.

If you’re not willing to be transparent about it, then you know that it’s wrong.

I agree with the honnesty approach. I see the secular and civil definintion of family expanding with potential bennefit but potential conflict with the paradigms of the church. If you think of a Domestic Partner as a substitute for spouse then it would not apply. But what if there were another category for an adult dependent.

Now you’re asking about something completely different.

First, I don’t think employers – who are already dealing with outrageous medical insurance bills – are going to expand coverage to adult dependents. But if they were to do so, I assume they would require that you prove you’re supporting the person.

If such great insurance is available, perhaps your roommate should get a job with your company. That way no one is committing any kind of fraud.

I’m sure you’re aware of the need to avoid making fraudulent claims about relationship and living arrangements in such matters.

In terms of cohabiting? Well, cohabiting with an unrelated person of your age group but opposite gender is not advisable (with the best of intentions it can provide occasions of both sin and scandal), but not actually immoral or sinful.

You’d need to ask your insurance company and possibly a lawyer about your options as far as the possibility of putting non-relatives on your insurance policy, since it is really a legal issue and not (or not yet) a moral one.

I think the term ‘dependent’ isn’t restricted to family members for one thing, you’d need to find out what the criteria are for someone to classify as a dependent of yours.

I would think this would be akin to scandle.
I wouldn’t do this because it is also called fraud. Which ,if caught,
you could be arrested and who knows what else. If this person needs medical help see what other public assistance is available.
Good luck


I think here,(USA) a dependant is classified as anyone that has been dependant on you for at least 6 months of the year and you claim them on your tax return for that year as a deduction.


Yes, you specifically are talking about fraud. You are lying about your relationship to an employer, claiming them to be a “domestic partner”. If you are lying for financial gain, that is fraud.

And when people hear that lie, they can and will rightly presume that there is a sexual relationship.

It appears that not only do you anticipate lying to a whole host of people in order to get some financial gain, you are lying to yourself about the lies and crimes you anticipate committing.

And make no mistake, what you are suggest is a very serious crime. You are looking at high fines and jail time when you get caught.

“Exact-ually” & “Well put!”:thumbsup: :yup: :bounce:


In fairness, OP never mentioned claiming them as a ‘domestic partner’, and made very clear several times, not least of all in the original post, that they were NOT contemplating fraud, NOT contemplating lying for insurance purposes, nor contemplating doing anything that in any other way went beyond the bounds of the law. Rather that they were simply wondering whether there was a LEGAL way they could help neighbours and friends.

If OP asserts this and asserts that they were only talking about LEGAL means of helping, then we must give them the benefit of the doubt and believe that this is what they meant, even if they used some possibly confusing terms in there.

I never said anything about lying I wouldn’t for legal reasons and more importantly I wouldn’t because it is just wrong. But companies are now covering non spouses, parrents, I heard some companies may even start covering pets. I figure it won’t be long till other adult dependents will be covered.

As for “Domestic Partner” in modern society that is considered an immoral substitute for a spouse. But what do you call a close friend? When I was growing up we didn’t have any family close enough to help out in an emergency. We did have lifelong neighbors/ friends who we refered to as aunt’s and uncle’s. Even though we were not related. They were listed as alternate points of contact for us if the school couldn’t reach our parrents. If one of them were ever in need of a place to stay they could live with us no questions asked. I that ever happened I would treat them like any of my blood relatives. This person would be a another adult member of my household and I am not really sure what term would be appropriate to describe them.

My grandfather moved in with my parrents. My cousin lived with my parrents a while. And it is quickly approaching the time when my generation will have to take on a greater role in caring for others. I often thought that it was a shame that we have an empty spare bedroom while others don’t have a place to live.

Although I do see where If we offered a home to a young mother who is choosing to keep a child it would have the appearance of impropriety.

I am sorry to see that anyone would have a problem with it. But I am glad to hear about it now before I offered to help anyone out.

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