The Office for National Statistics state cohabiting couple families are the fastest growing family type in the UK.   More children are born in families where parents chose not to marry, but to make a home together.  The myth of common law wife/husband still exists and a lot of people believe that will protect their legal position if the relationship comes to an end.  Relying on that myth can lead to heartbreak, significant legal costs and homelessness.

Resolution, an organisation of family lawyers, has long campaigned for increased legal protection for couples who chose to live together rather than marry.  However, despite various Law Commission reports, the position remains that if you are unmarried you are in a vulnerable position if your partner dies or the relationship comes to an end and you have not taken steps to protect your position.

Parties can protect an interest in a property by entering into a declaration of trust.  It is vital to make a Will, especially if there are children.  Some people chose to have a cohabitation contract recording how they will deal with their finances.  Obtaining legal advice before living together can provide certainty. 

If you are concerned about the legal issues that may arise contact Amanda Holland on 0121 698 2200, email a.holland@sydneymitchell.co.uk or fill in our online enquiry form.

 

Lexcel Practice Management Standard Birmingham Law Firm of the Year for 2011 Resolution Collaborative Family Lawyer The Law Society Accredited in Family Law UK Legal 500 2016 Conveyancing Quality Scheme