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Cohabitation Policy: where are we now?

Date:4 NOV 2021
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Graeme Fraser Partner and Head of Family OGR Stock Denton LLP

This article summarises Resolution’s responses to the Parliamentary Inquiry into the Rights of Cohabiting Partners and their proposal to reform Schedule 1 of the Children Act 1989 in response to the Law Commission’s 14th Programme of law reform.

The response to the Inquiry sets out the legislative changes needed to improve rights protection of cohabitants including a proposed legal definition of cohabitation. The equalities issues raised by the lack of legal protection include relationship-generated disadvantage the impact of the common law marriage myth on different age groups and the treatment of religious marriages not recognised in England and Wales.

Resolution proposes reform of Schedule 1 to remove discrimination between the financial security for children of unmarried parents and married parents to improve outcomes for children on relationship breakdown. In practice many children are currently excluded from the scope of Schedule 1. Expanding the Court’s powers could include making pension sharing orders and directing that the payer use other resources in particular those held in private limited companies.

Overall these proposals ...

Read the full article here.