Increase in Cohabiting Couples

Data compiled following an analysis of figures from the 2001 and 2011 Census’ has suggested that the number of unmarried families within the UK is continuing to rise.

Figures published earlier this month revealed that over the last year the number of marriages within England and Wales has increased; the data compiled, however, following the Census analysis has revealed that between 2001 and 2011 the number of households with married couples has fallen – from 70 percent to 65 percent.

In contrast, those households which comprise of cohabiting families has increased during the same period, rising from 14 percent to 17 percent; whilst roughly 40 percent of such couples have a dependent child.

Following the release of the latest data, there have been renewed calls for family law within the UK to be changed, to provide cohabiting couples more legal rights.

The calls also follow the first reading of the Cohabitation Rights Bill which took place towards the end of last year – although no date has been set for the second reading of the Bill.

As family law solicitors in Lincoln, we are all too aware that cohabiting couples do not have the same legal rights as married couples; unfortunately we are also aware that many couples do not realise this until the relationship has broken down. There is no such thing as a common-law marriage.

With cohabiting couples not having the same legal rights as their married counterparts, it is important that those considering living with their partner take steps to legally protect themselves; and this is where our family law team can assist – by discussing cohabitation agreements.

Such agreements enable couples to protect any property or assets owned before they lived together and to ensure ownership is retained – should the relationship breakdown.

For those couples who are cohabiting or intending to cohabit and wish to discuss how they can legally protect themselves our experienced family law solicitors in Lincoln are able to assist – find out how by contacting us today.