Legal Advice for Unmarried Couples on Separation, Division & Protection of Assets
The fastest growing family type in the UK are unmarried couples living together, yet regular research surveys show that couples who are taking the step of living together do not understand the legal implications of doing so.
At Lupton Fawcett we have a team of expert family solicitors that are understanding and sympathetic to your needs, whether you are starting your relationship or if your relationship has broken down. We can provide tailored advice on your particular circumstances so that you understand the implications of moving in with your partner and make sure that your interests are protected or we can advise you on your rights if you are separating from your partner.
Many people believe that couples that cohabit benefit from the same, or similar, legal protection as married couples in the event that they separate. This is often referred to as a “common law marriage”. This is far from the case as there is no such thing as a common law marriage. The reality is that there is very little protection for couples who are living together and unmarried, leaving millions of people at risk of significant financial hardship should they separate or their partner die without leaving a will.
It is possible, and unfortunately relatively common, that a person separating from their partner of many years could find themselves with no financial interest in their home and that their partner has no obligation to support them financially. On the other hand, if a person has been the main or sole financial contributor towards the mortgage, they could find themselves having to hand over half of the equity in the property to their partner in the event that they separate.
If you are thinking of moving in with your partner then you should consider entering into a Cohabitation Agreement, to record what you and your partner think should happen if you are to separate. By entering into a Cohabitation Agreement at the outset of your cohabiting relationship can provide financial security and certainty in the future. Find more information about Cohabitation Agreements here.
If you have separated from your partner, or thinking of separating and want some advice on your options then please contact us