Civil partnerships for heterosexual couples – an update

Big news for heterosexual couples who don’t want to get married – the law is about to change to allow you to apply for a civil partnership. It’s been a while coming, but one of the last areas of inequality in the world of formally recognised partnerships is about to be rectified. The choice to opt for a civil partnership rather than marriage has been closed to heterosexual couples ever since civil partnerships were introduced in 2004, when the Civil Partnership Act stated that only same-sex couples were entitled to…

Disinheritance – a quick guide to cutting someone out of your Will

The message is slowly starting to get through to the public – making a will is an important life decision that could save your relatives a great deal of heartache once you’ve gone. You can express your wishes, designate who gets what, and that’s the end of it. Or is it? Legal research has reported that the number of disputed wills has shot up in the last couple of years, from 116 in 2015 to 158 in 2016. That may not seem like a high number, but it represents nearly…

Civil partnership or cohabit – which is better?

Not everyone wants to get married in a church or registry office. For many cohabiting couples, a civil partnership is far more attractive – it moves away from the idea of women being the ‘property’ of their husbands and is infinitely more acceptable to those who do not follow any particular faith. Civil partnerships have been available for same-sex couples since 2004, yet they are still not available for heterosexual couples who cohabit. In June the legality of denying heterosexual couples the right to have a civil partnership was challenged…

Can pre-nup agreements help to save your marriage?

Wedding season is just around the corner, and has an extra buzz thanks to the brace of royal weddings planned for 2018. If you’re tying the knot this year, it’s likely you’ve spent time carefully planning everything from bouquets to bunting. But have you given a second thought to a pre-nuptial agreement? Some couples just don’t want to think about what happens if there isn’t the dreamed of fairy-tale ending. But what if a pre-nup could actually help make your marriage stronger? What can a pre-nup do? A pre-nup is…

Civil partnerships for all?

In a recent survey regarding whether Civil Partnerships should be made available for heterosexual couples, 57% of people asked stated that they felt all couples should be given the right to enter into a civil partnership and 20% of people stated that civil partnerships should be removed altogether, with 24% stating they did not know or did not mind what should happen. The term civil partnership in law has been used to refer to same sex relationships and the Civil Partnership Act 2004 governs this type of relationship. This also…

Getting rocky relationships through the New Year

The month of January can be a rocky one for families, in the post- Christmas period, which is often followed with news of unhappy couples who decide to call it quits, as family lawyers receive a surge of enquiries in the New Year.   According to the latest figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS), the overall rates of divorce are continuing to fall. There were 111,169 divorces in 2014, a decrease of 3.1% compared with 2013 and 27% lower than 2003. Compared with data from 2004, divorce rates were…

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