Unmarried couples living together in England and Wales do not have the same legal rights as those who are married or who are in a civil partnership. Contrary to common opinion, no matter how lengthy the relationship, there is no such thing as a “common law marriage.”

One of the most effective ways to obtain protection when cohabiting is to put in place a cohabitation agreement setting out your living arrangements and how any properties, assets or joint bank accounts should be dealt with if you separate. This is particularly important if you own rather than rent a property. We can assist you with preparing a formal agreement or declaration of trust.

Whilst upon the breakdown of a relationship the family dynamics may be very similar to those involved in a divorce of civil partnership dissolution case, the relevant law and procedures are not and there are a variety of laws which apply depending on the asset which is in dispute. We can assist where:

- There is an issue with join ownership of a property where one party refuses to cooperate with a sale;
- Where one party argues that they have a financial interest in a property of which they are not the legal owner;
- Disputes involving cohabitants who are in business together

Child Arrangements for Unmarried Parents

If a dispute arises in relation to children, child arrangements are dealt with in the same way they would be if the parent were married and an application can be made under the Children Act 1989 for a child arrangement order.

Unlike for unmarried parents, there is provision in place to provide financial support for children

We offer an initial call with one of our representatives in order to assess whether we are able to assist you and to discuss anticipated fees for our services.


If you would like to speak to our expert legal team about this, or any related subject then please contact our team by phone on 0207 936 6329, Email or by completing our Quick Contact Form below.