Cohabiting rights: Legal rights when living together

Your legal rights when cohabiting are significantly different to the legal rights available to a married couple or civil partners. Unfortunately, there are no automatic rights to claims over your partner’s assets no matter how long you have lived with your partner.

Where do you stand on cohabiting rights?

In 2007, the Law Commission published its recommendations to introduce legislation to provide financial relief to cohabiting couples, but this was not progressed in England and Wales. With a right in cohabiting couples, the House of Commons’ Briefing Paper discussed statistics regarding the rise in cohabiting couples.

In 2015 alone, it was estimated that around 3.1 million opposite sex couples live together and there were about 2.1 million dependent children of cohabiting parents. As well as around 90,000 same sex couples living together in 2015 without a civil partnership or marriage.

What should you do regarding your rights?

As it stands, there are no plans for legislation to be introduced to make this aspect of law any clearer. In the absence of a clear legal framework for cohabiting couples, our team of friendly and approachable solicitors are on hand to give advice regarding your cohabiting rights.

Please contact Charles Goodbody in our Warminster office on 01985 214444 or email cgoodbody@mulaw.co.uk if you would like to discuss any aspect of this article or require more information.