Latest articles
Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust v DV (A Child) [2021] EWHC 1037 (Fam)
(Family Division, Cohen J, 19 April 2021)Medical Treatment – 17-year-old had form of bone cancer and required surgery For comprehensive, judicially approved coverage of every important...
Domestic Abuse Bill
Aaron Gates-Lincoln, Immigration NewsAfter years of development the Domestic Abuse Bill returned to the House of Lords in the UK on the 8th March 2021 to complete its report stage, one of the final...
Coercive control and children’s welfare in Re H-N and Others
When families come to strife, arrangements must be made for the future care of any children. In some circumstances, this means an application to the courts. These ‘private law orders’ can...
Profession: Expert Witness
The value of a family business or business interest is treated as an asset and therefore part of the matrimonial pot to be distributed when it comes to negotiating a financial settlement on divorce or...
How does a jointly held property pass on death?
When meeting with clients to discuss their succession planning, many cannot recall whether their property is held jointly as joint tenants or jointly as tenants in common. The distinction is that with...
View all articles
Authors

The Steinfeld Effect: Equal Civil Partnerships and the Construction of the Cohabitant

Sep 23, 2019, 16:02 PM
Civil partnerships – marriage – cohabitation - Steinfeld and Keidan
The Civil Partnerships, Marriages and Deaths (Registration etc) Act 2019 places the Secretary of State under an obligation to reform the currently same-sex only Civil Partnership Act 2004 so as to enable access by different-sex couples.
Slug :
Meta Title : The Steinfeld Effect: Equal Civil Partnerships and the Construction of the Cohabitant
Meta Keywords : Civil partnerships – marriage – cohabitation - Steinfeld and Keidan
Canonical URL :
Trending Article : No
Prioritise In Trending Articles : No
Date : Sep 22, 2019, 23:00 PM
Article ID :

Keywords: Civil partnerships – marriage – cohabitation - Steinfeld and Keidan  


The full version of this article will appear in Child and Family Law Quarterly, Vol 31, No  4

Find out more or request a free 1-week trial of Child and Family Law Quarterly. Please quote: 100482.


The Civil Partnerships, Marriages and Deaths (Registration etc) Act 2019 places the Secretary of State under an obligation to reform the currently same-sex only Civil Partnership Act 2004 so as to enable access by different-sex couples. It was introduced in the wake of multiple Private Members Bills, public petitions and a recent Supreme Court decision in Steinfeld and Keidan. A key element underpinning this campaign for reform is the assertion that opening such status to different-sex couples will offer beneficial legal protections to cohabitants. Clearly motivated by the exponential rise in cohabitation, this prominent narrative in the parliamentary debates, government reports and media coverage has positioned civil partnerships as a solution to the absence of comprehensive statutory cohabitation reform, which is widely viewed as a pressing issue yet one that to date no political party has tackled. This article interrogates the assumptions underpinning this narrative and reveals that conceptualising civil partnerships as a means of giving more comprehensive legal protections to cohabitants is not a recent phenomenon in England and Wales. However, through tracing the depiction of cohabitation to the present day, this article argues that caution should be exercised in terms of precisely how far civil partnerships can combat relationship-generated disadvantage. Moreover, this article questions whether the modern construction of ‘the cohabitant’ beneficiary used in the equal civil partnerships narrative adequately acknowledges the myriad of cohabiting relationships or, instead, entrenches even further a monolithic understanding of interpersonal relationships premised on a marital model.

This article has been accepted for publication in Child and Family Law Quarterly in Issue 4, Vol 31, Year 2019. The final published version of this article will be published and made publicly available here 24 months after its publication date, under a CC-BY-NC licence.
Categories :
  • Articles
  • CFLQ
Tags :
Family_law_cflq
Provider :
Product Bucket :
Related Articles
Load more comments
Comment by from