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Neil Russell Featured in Edward Fennell's Legal Diary

Partner and Head of Family Department Neil Russell commented in The Legal Diary on the recently released annual civil partnership statistics for 2020.

The recently released statistics show the formations and dissolutions of civil partnerships across the country. 

Commenting on the growing trend of opposite-sex civil partnerships, Neil commented: "“Today’s statistics pose an interesting question- is marriage no longer considered the gold standard with 7,566 opposite-sex civil partnerships formed in England and Wales? There has been a growing trend in opposite-sex civil partnerships since the Supreme Court decision in 2018 in the case of Steinfield and Keidan. As from 31 December 2019 all couples have had the choice whether to marry or enter into a civil partnership. Yet, cohabiting couples who choose not to marry need to be aware that without marriage or a civil partnership, they do not have any financial provision available on breakup, which remains a huge problem.

 “Cohabiting couples need to be aware of myths such as a ‘common law spouse’, as there is no such thing.  It’s all about the label, of which there are three to choose from, two of which (marriage and civil partnership) provide for financial provision on a break up, beyond strict property rights.  Watching your partner drop down on one knee, may leave you in suspense not knowing if you will be given a proposal of marriage, or civil partnership, or the option of which one to choose, like a multiple-choice test. There is no legal difference, in terms of responsibilities, commitments and obligations.”

 

To read the full issue on line, visit here

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