This Commons Library briefing paper provides general information about how the law applies to cohabitants, the number of cohabiting couples, and about the Law Commission’s proposals for reform.
Although cohabitating couples do have legal protection in several areas, such as under the law relating to domestic abuse, cohabitation gives no general legal status to a couple, unlike marriage and civil partnership from which many legal rights and responsibilities flow. Many people are unaware this is the case.
This briefing provides information about the number of cohabiting couples, how the law applies to them, the Law Commission’s proposals for reform, and other calls for reform.
You can find the briefing here: “Common law marriage” and cohabitation