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Chapter

Cohabitating relationships are not covered by the same coherent body of law available to married couples or civil partners. Many cohabitants mistakenly believe that they acquire legal rights after a number of years of cohabiting, but this is incorrect. Many clients are shocked to find that they have few legal remedies, and that available are far from straightforward. This chapter begins with a comparison of marriage, civil partnership, and cohabitation. It then goes on to discuss the law on cohabitation contracts, as well as case-law relating to this. The Law Commission Proposals and future developments on cohabitation are then discussed.

Chapter

Marriage is not the only way that couples can live together. The term for living together without marriage or civil partnership is cohabiting. The numbers for people cohabiting rather than living in marriage or civil partnership is increasing. The acceptance of cohabitation across all age groups has risen also. Irrespective of the nature and duration of the cohabitation, there exist in the law a vast difference between the position of cohabitants and those of married couples when a relationship breaks down and in terms of law and legal rights. This chapter looks at what the differences are and what remedies are available to cohabiting partners who suffer a relationship breakdown. Unfortunately, the government appears to have no plans to reform this area of law.

Chapter

Cohabitating relationships are not covered by the same coherent body of law available to married couples or civil partners. Many cohabitants mistakenly believe that they acquire legal rights after a number of years of cohabiting, but this is incorrect. Many clients are shocked to find that they have few legal remedies, and that available are far from straightforward. This chapter begins with a comparison of marriage, civil partnership, and cohabitation. It then goes on to discuss the law on cohabitation contracts, as well as case-law relating to this. The Law Commission Proposals and future developments on cohabitation are then discussed.

Chapter

N V Lowe and G Douglas

This chapter focuses on the particular phenomenon of cohabitation and considers the legal response to it. It begins by looking at the demographic and sociological picture concerning its growth and extent. It then considers how it has been defined and recognised in the law, in particular noting how far cohabitation is required to mimic marriage in order to be given such recognition. Cohabitation becomes most problematic for the law when the couple separate. The chapter examines how the law addresses this issue. It reviews proposed reforms and evaluates whether these should be adopted. It concludes by considering whether the example of cohabitation sheds light on other alternative forms of family organisation and what implications a shift from a focus on formal status to functional and practical family arrangements has for the body of law called ‘family’ law.

Chapter

This chapter explores the historical development and modern statutory framework applicable to adult formalised and non-formalised relationships. It attempts to instil a thorough understanding of the key principles applicable to the formation and subsequent regulation of these relationships. Owing to the rapid change in family forms and the growing legal recognition of same-sex relationships, the statutory framework has evolved. The chapter assess how far these frameworks have successfully accommodated modern family forms and whether further reform is required. Topics discussed include the evolution of marriage; the formal recognition of same-sex relationships; legal consequences and formalities for entry into marriage; the legal consequences of nullity; civil partnerships; and cohabitation.

Chapter

This chapter starts by outlining some of the changes in society that have driven the development of the law on disputes regarding the family home. When a family is living happily together, there are unlikely to be disputes about the ownership of the family home. However, where the relationship fails, or one of the parties dies, the division of assets—including the family home—can be a deeply divisive issue. Where a couple are married, their dispute can often be resolved through the divorce legislation. Even then, the chapter shows how equity may have a part to play.

Chapter

Cohabiting couples do not have any intrinsic legal rights by simply cohabiting. The ‘common law wife/husband’ does not exist in law, despite many believing that it does. This chapter discusses the legal position of cohabitants and financial remedies. This includes the Law Commission Proposals in order to try and allow cohabitants to gain some financial relief in certain circumstances. The legal remedies available to separating cohabitants including establishing legal title and a beneficial interest, is outlined. This also includes resulting and constructive trusts. Finally, the position of cohabitants in relation to the family home and Trusts of Land and Appointment of Trustees Act is discussed.

Chapter

Cohabiting couples do not have any intrinsic legal rights by simply cohabiting. The ‘common law wife/husband’ does not exist in law, despite many believing that it does. This chapter discusses the legal position of cohabitants and financial remedies. This includes the Law Commission Proposals in order to try and allow cohabitants to gain some financial relief in certain circumstances. The legal remedies available to separating cohabitants including establishing legal title and a beneficial interest, is outlined. This also includes resulting and constructive trusts. Finally, the position of cohabitants in relation to the family home and Trusts of Land and Appointment of Trustees Act is discussed.

Chapter

This chapter starts by outlining some of the changes in society that have driven the development of the law on disputes regarding the family home. When a family is living happily together, there are unlikely to be disputes about the ownership of the family home. However, where the relationship fails, or one of the parties dies, the division of assets-including the family home-can be a deeply divisive issue. Where a couple are married, their dispute can often be resolved through the divorce legislation. Even then, the chapter shows how equity may have a part to play. It also looks at the current state of the law. Most of the cases taken up in this chapter involve cohabiting (rather than married) couples and the family home.

Chapter

This chapter explores the historical development and modern statutory framework applicable to adult formalised and non-formalised relationships. It attempts to instil a thorough understanding of the key principles applicable to the formation and subsequent regulation of these relationships. Owing to the rapid change in family forms and the growing legal recognition of same-sex relationships, the statutory framework has evolved. The chapter assesses how far these frameworks have successfully accommodated modern family forms and whether further reform is required. Topics discussed include the evolution of marriage; the formal recognition of same-sex relationships; legal consequences and formalities for entry into marriage; the legal consequences of nullity; civil partnerships; and cohabitation.

Book

Edited by Ruth Lamont

Family Law offers a contextual and critical examination of the subject, discussing areas of debate and controversy. Topics include: family life and the law; marriage, civil partnership, and cohabitation; seeking a divorce; and property division on divorce. It also examines property division on the breakdown of non-marital relationships; child support; domestic violence and abuse; and legal parenthood and parental responsibility. It moves on to look at private child law, public law child protection, adoption; and human rights and children’s rights in the family. Finally, it considers international family law and family law in practice.

Book

Edited by Ruth Lamont

Family Law offers a contextual and critical examination of the subject. Topics include: family life and the law; marriage, civil partnership, and cohabitation; seeking a divorce; and property division on divorce. It also examines property division on the breakdown of non-marital relationships; child support; domestic violence and abuse; and legal parenthood and parental responsibility. It moves on to look at private child law, the medical treatment of children, public law protection, adoption; and human rights, children's rights, and the family. Finally, it considers international family law and family law in practice.

Chapter

All books in this flagship series contain carefully selected substantial extracts from key cases, legislation, and academic debate, providing able students with a stand-alone resource. This chapter first considers demographic data on family relationships in England and Wales, and then examines the treatment of ‘trans’ people in this area of family law; and the history of legal recognition of intimate relationships between parties of the same gender, culminating in same-sex marriage and ensuing debates about the future of civil partnership. This is then followed by discussions of status-based relationships (marriage and civil partnership); creating a valid marriage or civil partnership; grounds on which a marriage or civil partnership is void; grounds on which a marriage or civil partnership is voidable; and non-formalized relationships (cohabitants and other ‘family’).

Chapter

This chapter discusses the grounds for divorce under the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973. These include adultery, unreasonable behaviour, desertion, two years’ separation plus consent, and five years’ separation. It also outlines the first year bar on divorce and the ground for divorce being that the marriage has broken down irretrievably. The chapter explores each of the five possible facts that prove the ground for divorce and explains the relevance of continued cohabitation between the parties in relation to unreasonable behaviour and adultery. It also discusses continuous separation. Some discussion of the proposals for no-fault divorce is also included in this chapter.

Chapter

This chapter discusses the grounds for divorce under the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973. These include adultery, unreasonable behaviour, desertion, two years’ separation plus consent, and five years’ separation. It also outlines the first year bar on divorce and the ground for divorce being that the marriage has broken down irretrievably. The chapter explores each of the five possible facts that prove the ground for divorce and explains the relevance of continued cohabitation between the parties in relation to unreasonable behaviour and adultery. It also discusses continuous separation. Some discussion of the proposals for no-fault divorce is also included in this chapter.

Chapter

This chapter addresses the termination of adult relationships, in particular divorce, but also the dissolution of civil partnerships, and the termination of cohabitation. Beginning with a discussion of the history of law on divorce and recent divorce statistics, it goes on to cover the law of divorce under the Matrimonial Causes Act (MCA) 1973, criticisms of the current law and recent reform initiatives. It then considers other decrees under MCA 1973, dissolution of a civil partnership, and termination of unmarried relationships.

Chapter

Essential Cases: Equity & Trusts provides a bridge between course textbooks and key case judgments. This case document summarizes the facts and decision in Stack v Dowden [2007] UKHL 17, House of Lords. The document also includes supporting commentary from author Derek Whayman.

Chapter

Essential Cases: Equity & Trusts provides a bridge between course textbooks and key case judgments. This case document summarizes the facts and decision in Jones v Kernott [2011] UKSC 53, Supreme Court. The document also includes supporting commentary from author Derek Whayman.

Chapter

Essential Cases: Equity & Trusts provides a bridge between course textbooks and key case judgments. This case document summarizes the facts and decision in Stack v Dowden [2007] UKHL 17, House of Lords. The document also includes supporting commentary from author Derek Whayman.

Chapter

The Concentrate Questions and Answers series offers the best preparation for tackling exam and assignment questions. Each book includes key debates, typical questions, diagram answer plans, suggested answers, author commentary, and tips to gain extra marks. This chapter focuses on family property, both real and personal, the difference between legal and beneficial ownership of real property, and ownership of personal property in bank accounts. The rights arising from cohabitation are also discussed and compared to rights arising from marriage. The first question is a problem question concerning an unmarried couple who have separated, whilst the second is an essay question on property registered in joint names.