What rights do cohabiting couples have?
Posted on 3rd December 2019
Our solicitors in Lancaster find that there is always an awareness-week looming, and this week is no different. From 25th to 29th November, Resolution are holding their annual Awareness Raising Week. Focusing on a different topic each year, this year Resolution are focusing on the need for legal reform to provide rights, however basic they may be, for cohabiting couples who separate.
So, what rights to cohabiting couples have?
Sadly, the answer to this question is simple: not a lot.
To put it in a real-life example, if one half of a co-habiting couple approach our family law experts in Preston and they are, or have, separated from their partner, generally they will have little-to-rights over anything they and their partner shared.
If a couple own property jointly, and they are not married, they will not automatically have any entitlement to the other person’s share on their separation, or if one of them dies.
If only one member of the couple owns the property, the other person may have no rights at all; they could walk away from the property with nothing, no matter how much money they have contributed.
Our team of family solicitors in Lancaster can advise you on your rights, and what you could be entitled to from your home, following your separation.
Co-habiting couples do not have any automatic rights to access their partner’s money if it is held in an account in their sole name. This includes if you separate from your partner, or if your partner passes away.
Our Wills and Probate Solicitors in Lancaster would explain that the only way to ensure that your partner has some rights when you pass away, or vice versa, is to make sure that your Will clearly sets out who your estate should pass to on your death. If you’ve got children from outside of your relationship that you want to provide for, there are options open to you, to make sure that your partner is still provided for.
Our team offer fixed-fee initial consultations for just £75.00 plus VAT, or you can draft your Will for only £100.00 plus VAT, to ensure that your partner is provided for.
If you need access to your partner’s money whilst they are still alive, and they are happy for you to be able to access this, our team offer fixed-fee Lasting Powers of Attorney for just £200.00 plus VAT.
To discuss making a Will or a Lasting Power of Attorney, you can contact our team at your local office, or you can email firstname.lastname@example.org.
If your partner has died without leaving a Will, and you feel like you should be entitled to make a claim, our expert Wills and Probate Solicitors in Lancaster may be able to help you make a claim; call our team today on 01524 581 306.
Financial Support – Maintenance
Unlike with spousal maintenance, co-habiting partners are not entitled to claim maintenance off one another when they separate.
Whilst two separated partners may agree between themselves to pay maintenance to one another, this could be difficult to enforce if either stopped paying.
You can contact our family solicitors in Lancaster, here, to find out how you can try and protect your rights.
Basically, before you decide to jump in and live with your partner, you should consider your legal position, and how this may change in the future. Our solicitors in Lancaster, Garstang and Longridge (Preston) are here to help.
Pop into your local office today, or email email@example.com.
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Tagged as: Family Solicitors Lancaster, Preston Property Law, Wills and Probate, Your Local Solicitors
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