No such thing as a common law

29 June 2011

Contrary to common belief, there is no such thing as a common law husband or wife in England, and the remedies available to separating cohabitants are far more limited (and complicated) than those of divorcing couples. Unmarried couples have to rely on a mixture of property and trust law when trying to prove an interest in a family home which is not registered in their name.

Although reform in this area is long overdue, we still await the Supreme Court’s judgment in Kernott v Jones and the Government’s response to the Law Commission’s report on cohabitation before details of any proposed changes in the law are revealed.

For more information about cohabitation or to ask about cohabitation agreements, please contact Jane Keir on 020 7814 1200 or

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