- N V Lowe, N V LoweEmeritus Professor of Law at Cardiff University
- G Douglas, G DouglasProfessor of Law at King’s College London
- E HitchingsE HitchingsProfessor in Family Law at University of Bristol
- and R TaylorR TaylorAssociate Professor of Law at University of Oxford and Fellow in Law at Exeter College, Oxford
This chapter considers how marriage, civil partnership or cohabitation affects the parties’ legal relationship with each other and the wider world. It examines the common law historical approach to marriage before discussing the use of a marital surname, the sexual relationship and the duty to provide financial support. It then discusses the approach taken to intimate relationships by contract law and tort, by public law, including criminal law, and by property law. The end of the chapter considers proposals for reform.