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20/02/2020

Fairness for families

At the last count there were 3.3 million cohabiting families in the UK, making up more than 17% of all families.

Unmarried couples living together are the fastest growing family type in the UK, making up nearly one in four families.  Most adults mistakenly think that couples acquire “common law” rights after living together for a certain period of time or having children together, but this is simply not the case.

There are no “common law” rights and this can put a financially vulnerable partner at significant disadvantage if the relationship breaks down or one partner passes away.

There are calls by the Legal Profession for the Law to be changed to at least provide basic legal protection on relationship breakdown, but this has yet to happen and some partners are left with a nasty shock when this happens, or the other partner passes away.

The profession is working to raise awareness so cohabiting couples take measures to protect themselves.

If you require any assistance regarding cohabitation, please do not hesitate to contact our Family Department and ask for either Sara Rutter or Christine McLay.