As the number of cohabiting couples increases, Carla Ditz considers whether new legislation will provide these families with adequate legal protection

Fourth June 2015 marked the first stage in the long journey through parliament of the Cohabitation Rights Bill, with the first reading in the House of Lords. Many will say this Bill can’t come soon enough, given the ever-rising number of people choosing to live as cohabitants rather than enter into marriage. Others will argue the status quo should remain, so as to preserve the institution of marriage.

The statistics are, however, telling. As more and more people choose cohabitation over marriage, the impetus for a change in the law grows.

According to figures released in January by the Office for National Statistics, cohabiting couples are the fastest-growing family type, accounting for 16.4 per cent of all fa...

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