In today’s modern society there are numerous couples that live together ‘as man and wife’ but are not actually married.  However, despite the fact that many people believe that there is such a thing as common law marriage this is completely untrue.  This does not exist in law.  As yet, cohabitating couples do not have the same or similar rights as those of married couples, or those who have entered a civil partnership, should their relationship break down.  Indeed, they have significantly less rights.

If you are living together as a couple, or contemplating the same, then there are a number of actions you can take in order to protect yourself and your partner.  These are as follows:

1 – Consider how any property you own is held.  Most cohabitee disputes relate to how property is owned.  Therefore legal advice should be taken upon purchasing a property as there are a number of different ways it can be held.  If you decide to own property jointly as joint tenants then the right of survivorship will apply should either party die but this is not the case if you own the property as tenants in common.

2 –  Make a will.  In law a cohabitee is not classed as next of kin. Therefore it is important to make a will to ensure that any property or personal items are passed to the person of your choice in the event of your death.

3 – Entering into a cohabitation agreement – In the event that the relationship breaks down a cohabitation agreement can define how property and assets should be divided.  Whilst such agreements are not legally binding they assist the court by showing the court what the intentions of the parties were at the time the agreement was entered into.

By attending to the above when commencing cohabitation you can minimise any potential problems in the event that your relationship breaks down.

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If you would like to know more about how our tailored services can best suit your needs, do not hesitate to get in touch. Although based in Greater Manchester, we can provide high-quality legal assistance to those who need it around the UK. Call us today on 0161 928 3848, or fill in the online contact form.

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Kind and courteous attention, combined with knowledge and expertise.

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Excellent, friendly and efficient service. Would use again.

Mr G

Everything went smoothly and this is mainly due to the pleasant service, professionalism and helpfulness of Grace Kennedy who steered us through our LPA and wills update.

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Grace was very professional and an asset to your company.

Mr P

Always good advice and easy to talk to.

Mrs A

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We thank Grace, Marta Grzelak, Helen Green and Kasia for their help, support, commitment, and sometimes consolation – for empathy. We managed to overcome the language barrier and legal procedures. And everything was possible thanks to the wonderful Angels from the law firm.

Despite the fact that the administration has officially ended – you will all remain in our memories and hearts for a long time.

Ms H

First class service, advice and support from Michaela at Mchale & Co. Definitely recommend.

 

 

Mr N

A big thank you for Marta Grzelak.
Couldn’t have asked for more. I would not hesitate in recommending her to friends and family. A fantastic service all round.

Ms J

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Mr L

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