Statistics show that the number of people seeking divorce has steadily fallen over the last 14 years. Isn’t that great news?!
Look into the statistics a little further, and you’ll see that fewer people are getting married these days. If there are fewer marriages, there’s bound to be fewer divorces.
It’s not that there’s an abundance of single people, certainly no more than in other years. People, regardless of gender, culture, etc., are still forming committed relationships - it’s just that fewer of these couples are opting for a marriage or civil ceremony to recognise or celebrate their commitment to each other. They don’t feel the need.
However, what may be a seismic shift in society has made little impact on the amount of relationships that fail, unfortunately. As divorce lawyers, we haven’t seen a drop in the amount of legal advice we give or the number of clients whose commitments have faltered. Just because someone hasn’t stood in a white dress or a snazzy suit before a registrar/church official doesn’t mean they won’t have joint assets to sort, or children for whom rights, access and residence needs defining.
There are a lot of myths around the term ‘common law spouse’. Rarely are divisions of assets or family matters straightforward but they’re even less so when there’s no legal framework or laws to work with. It’s a fact: a common law spouse does not have the same protection or rights as someone who is married.
Many couples quite happily cohabit, with no urge to stand at an altar anywhere. This is absolutely fine and certainly something widely accepted in this day and age, compared to a couple of generations ago. However, we always recommend getting a legal agreement drawn up when you decide to pool your lives and assets. Who knows whether your relationship is destined to blossom or turn sour? It’s so much easier for everyone involved if crucial decisions are made when everyone is amicable and on the same page, whilst they have objectivity and the best outcome for everyone at heart.
Rucklidge’s Solicitors can draft a co-habitation agreement between parties. Through our extensive knowledge and the years we’ve spent dividing up the assets of co-habitees, we absolutely recommend protecting yourselves when things ramp up a notch and you make the decision to move in together.
Visit our website for more information: http://rucklidges.co.uk/