Your browser isn't supported
It looks like you're using an old web browser. To get the most out of the site and to ensure guides display correctly, we suggest upgrading your browser now. Download the latest:

Welcome to the MSE Forums

We're home to a fantastic community of MoneySavers but anyone can post. Please exercise caution & report spam, illegal, offensive or libellous posts/messages: click "report" or email forumteam@.

Search
  • FIRST POST
    • Pixie5740
    • By Pixie5740 27th Nov 17, 3:45 PM
    • 11,198Posts
    • 15,649Thanks
    Pixie5740
    Co-habiting couples warned of "common law marriage" myth
    • #1
    • 27th Nov 17, 3:45 PM
    Co-habiting couples warned of "common law marriage" myth 27th Nov 17 at 3:45 PM
    I saw this on the BBC website earlier:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-42134722

    Resolution carried out a survey which found two-thirds of cohabiting couples wrongly believe "common-law marriage" laws exist when dividing up finances.

    Resolution chairman Nigel Shepherd said current laws were "behind the times".
    He said: "The government must listen to the public, legal professionals and a growing number of politicians who all agree that we need reform to provide basic rights to cohabiting couples should they separate."

    What do you think? My view is that marriage is a contract and if you don't enter into it then you can't expect the protection of the law when things go down the pooper.
    Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen pounds nineteen and six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds nought and six, result misery.
Page 5
    • svain
    • By svain 28th Nov 17, 10:45 PM
    • 228 Posts
    • 403 Thanks
    svain
    i have couple of step-kids from my late wife. I was asked back in the day whether we were planning to have more kids in the future .... but never in my life (im mid-40's) been asked "when" am i having children ..... I mix with all sorts of people socially and thru work and have never heard that question asked in that way.
    Last edited by svain; 28-11-2017 at 10:48 PM.
    • Tabbytabitha
    • By Tabbytabitha 28th Nov 17, 10:54 PM
    • 465 Posts
    • 912 Thanks
    Tabbytabitha
    i have couple of step-kids from my late wife. I was asked back in the day whether we were planning to have more kids in the future .... but never in my life (im mid-40's) been asked "when" am i having children ..... I mix with all sorts of people socially and thru work and have never heard that question asked in that way.
    Originally posted by svain
    It tends to be women who have that sort of pressure rather than their husbands.
    • getmore4less
    • By getmore4less 29th Nov 17, 5:25 AM
    • 30,783 Posts
    • 18,391 Thanks
    getmore4less

    It's not just a few people though. It's something that I have been asked so, so many times by so many different people over the past few years and there really is no easy way to respond.

    I've tried being direct and telling people it's none of their business, they cop the hump and tell ME that I'M being rude...

    I've tried "When we're ready" and been lectured on how I'm "not getting any younger" and really should think about it sooner rather than later.

    I've told people that we've been trying and it's just not happening and then have to deal with the pity-face "so, any luck?" follow-up questions and lectures about how I should/shouldn't be eating this, doing that etc.

    It is constant and relentless and there is absolutely nothing that I've found which will make people stop.
    Originally posted by Izadora
    Tell them kids destroy your life and use up all your money, then book another holiday.
    • Happier Me
    • By Happier Me 29th Nov 17, 8:43 AM
    • 392 Posts
    • 836 Thanks
    Happier Me
    I agree that marriage is a contract and we shouldn't muddy the waters by applying marriage or civil partnership rights to cohabiting couples. Make it official if you want the protection marriage provides.

    I am married and I have no issue sharing my wealth with my husband and vice versa. I would however be unlikely to marry again unless any new partner brought to the table a similar amount financially. I want to protect what I've worked hard for which is why we should have a choice as adults to make that level of commitment in an official capacity.

    In terms of equality, in my experience there is an expectation that women conform in a certain way once they've had children. We're vilified if we work full time and if we don't work at all. Part time work is more acceptable but in most cases affects career development. I would never have had children outside of marriage, all be it my own financial contribution has not been affected by kids. The effort to do it all (maintain a full time career whilst having the flexibility to manage all the childcare, including working flexibly enough to drop off/collect the kids from school two days a week and do the majority of the housework) has definitely taken its toll on my health...and yes I know I'm a mug. I know several mugs of both sees though that appear to do far more than their fair share.
    • Izadora
    • By Izadora 29th Nov 17, 10:44 AM
    • 1,465 Posts
    • 4,203 Thanks
    Izadora
    Why do you feel the need to keep the company of complete nobends?
    Originally posted by Malthusian
    I don't but unfortunately don't get to choose my colleagues. And before someone suggests changing jobs, it's happened to too many of my friends in different offices for me to think that would make the slightest bit of difference.

    Tell them kids destroy your life and use up all your money, then book another holiday.
    Originally posted by getmore4less
    I might have to steal that
    • onomatopoeia99
    • By onomatopoeia99 29th Nov 17, 11:09 AM
    • 3,623 Posts
    • 7,975 Thanks
    onomatopoeia99
    I don't but unfortunately don't get to choose my colleagues. And before someone suggests changing jobs, it's happened to too many of my friends in different offices for me to think that would make the slightest bit of difference.
    Originally posted by Izadora
    You don't get it in a company full of computer nerds in my experience. If you're not actually a computer nerd yourself, that probably won't help much though!

    It's actually made for some odd conversations with my mother where I'll mention something someone at work has said and she'll ask me something else about them which I won't be able to answer even though I've known them for years, as I simply haven't asked. She finds this incomprehensible - I'll say I'm not nosy and if they want to volunteer the information then that's fine but otherwise I won't ask about their private life, she'll say I should be "taking an interest in people".

    Suffice to say I'd never tell someone they were getting on a bit and need to be making babies!
    INTP, nerd, libertarian and scifi geek.
    Home is where my books are.
    • Gloomendoom
    • By Gloomendoom 29th Nov 17, 11:39 AM
    • 13,253 Posts
    • 17,468 Thanks
    Gloomendoom
    We must move in really differnt circles then. My friends are mostly engineers, scientists, programmers, that sort of thing (there's a university professor and a doctor amongst them as well, to get the public sector quotient up). Colleagues are all programmers like me.
    Originally posted by onomatopoeia99
    I'm not sure university professors count as public sector, or any university employee for that matter. The department I work in receives little or no direct funding from the public education purse.

    "When are you going to have children?" is a question that literally never gets asked, by women or men. Who asks it?
    When we first married, this question was relentlessly brought up by two of my wife's sisters. To the point that she felt quite pressured to conform. There was no pressure at all to conform by her colleagues. Paradoxically, academia is good career choice for women with children as the hours are very flexible, but the proportion of child free or single child women seems far higher than in other fields.
    Advice; it rhymes with mice. Advise; it rhymes with wise.
    • maman
    • By maman 29th Nov 17, 12:05 PM
    • 17,139 Posts
    • 102,476 Thanks
    maman
    I agree that marriage is a contract and we shouldn't muddy the waters by applying marriage or civil partnership rights to cohabiting couples. Make it official if you want the protection marriage provides.
    Originally posted by Happier Me

    I would have agreed with you completely on that but I'm wavering.


    There's been a lot in the media on this point this week. Today, for example, I read about someone who'd been given leave to appeal a decision that prevented her having a bereavement payout when her long term partner died as they weren't married. So it seems the establishment is questioning whether to recognise a cohabitee. However, on the other hand, the benefit system does take account of a live in partner whether married or not. It seems the whole thing is a construct of government and has unfairness and illogicality built in.


    Food for thought.
    • honeyend
    • By honeyend 29th Nov 17, 12:20 PM
    • 10 Posts
    • 14 Thanks
    honeyend
    I know two close friends, both women who have become unstuck by not being married.
    One the father of her children died, the children were still at home, but they had to sell the home and move into rented. I always regret when he was ill not telling her to get married quickly as it would have avoided a lot of stress an worry.
    The other had been in a relationship for over 20years, he literally took everything from her, she had worked for him, looked after their children etc.
    Marriage is a contract, you know exactly what you are entitled to. Unfortunately for all my women friends who have divorced it is the men that hide assets.


    I have worked in some capacity most of my married life, we decided before we got married that he would always earn more than me so I had to be flexible, cashed in my pension when we were hard up, up sticks when needed. After 40 years we have amassed assets we have both worked for, but even if it was less than that, if you look on a marriage/civil partnership as a small business with two partners who have different roles and responsibilities, if its a financial success both should get the rewards.
    We have made our wills and my children get my assets, been there when the new partners children get the lot. Not bitter just wiser than my mother.
    • Judi
    • By Judi 29th Nov 17, 12:37 PM
    • 15,461 Posts
    • 63,827 Thanks
    Judi
    I have worked in some capacity most of my married life, we decided before we got married that he would always earn more than me so I had to be flexible, cashed in my pension when we were hard up, up sticks when needed. After 40 years we have amassed assets we have both worked for, but even if it was less than that, if you look on a marriage/civil partnership as a small business with two partners who have different roles and responsibilities, if its a financial success both should get the rewards.
    We have made our wills and my children get my assets, been there when the new partners children get the lot. Not bitter just wiser than my mother.
    So sad when it comes down to money though... sad but very understandable.
    'Holy crap on a cracker!'
    • Gloomendoom
    • By Gloomendoom 29th Nov 17, 12:37 PM
    • 13,253 Posts
    • 17,468 Thanks
    Gloomendoom
    on the other hand, the benefit system does take account of a live in partner whether married or not. It seems the whole thing is a construct of government and has unfairness and illogicality built in.
    Originally posted by maman
    There is an easy way to remove the unfairness and illogicality; remove the benefit entitlement of unmarried live-in partners.

    Then sit back and marvel at the length of the queues outside registry offices up and down the land.
    Advice; it rhymes with mice. Advise; it rhymes with wise.
    • ViolaLass
    • By ViolaLass 29th Nov 17, 12:44 PM
    • 5,148 Posts
    • 7,145 Thanks
    ViolaLass
    I agree. Male suicide is a real problem.


    Whilst mental health services are available equality to both men and women. Some of the aggravating factors, especially around domestic abuse are certainly unequal. The reason I see that as an inequality is that the state deliberately splits funding based upon gender.

    The state is the ultimate authority. So yes 33% (upto 40% according to some studies) of victims of domestic violence and abuse are men, yet only 1 in 100 beds in shelters cater to men. That is state sponsored inequality, which I would say is a problem caused by 'society' ie the general populous, proxying in the govt.
    Originally posted by Comms69
    It wouldn't be acceptable to tell those men to 'get out of that relationship' would it? (not without offering further support)

    In the same vein, it's not OK to tell the women to just find themselves another job where they won't be forced to wear shoes that make their feet bleed. Apart from anything else, do you really think they're too stupid to think of it themselves?
    • maman
    • By maman 29th Nov 17, 12:56 PM
    • 17,139 Posts
    • 102,476 Thanks
    maman
    There is an easy way to remove the unfairness and illogicality; remove the benefit entitlement of unmarried live-in partners.

    Then sit back and marvel at the length of the queues outside registry offices up and down the land.
    Originally posted by Gloomendoom

    Sorry but I know little of the benefit system. I thought that unmarried couples living together were already 'penalised' by the system in that they can't claim as if they were two separate entities.
    • Comms69
    • By Comms69 29th Nov 17, 1:20 PM
    • 1,270 Posts
    • 1,033 Thanks
    Comms69
    It wouldn't be acceptable to tell those men to 'get out of that relationship' would it? (not without offering further support)

    In the same vein, it's not OK to tell the women to just find themselves another job where they won't be forced to wear shoes that make their feet bleed. Apart from anything else, do you really think they're too stupid to think of it themselves?
    Originally posted by ViolaLass


    Of course it would, the first thing to be said to those men is - get out, as soon as possible. Ofcourse getting out of a controlling relationship tends to mean losing home, possessions, family contact etc.


    So yes I think in both cases it's absolutely fine.


    But you want to compare domestic abuse to working conditions?...
    • Gavin83
    • By Gavin83 29th Nov 17, 1:35 PM
    • 4,721 Posts
    • 7,500 Thanks
    Gavin83
    I'm quite lucky really in that both me and my fianc! earn similar salaries and always have done. Should the worst happen it would make a 50/50 split of assets extremely easy as we've both contributed similar amounts on paper.

    I'd imagine many issues occur when one partner earns a fair bit more than the other and therefore feels entitled to more, rightly or wrongly.
    • Gloomendoom
    • By Gloomendoom 29th Nov 17, 3:03 PM
    • 13,253 Posts
    • 17,468 Thanks
    Gloomendoom
    Sorry but I know little of the benefit system. I thought that unmarried couples living together were already 'penalised' by the system in that they can't claim as if they were two separate entities.
    Originally posted by maman
    Looks like I know even less than you.
    Advice; it rhymes with mice. Advise; it rhymes with wise.
    • Judi
    • By Judi 29th Nov 17, 4:01 PM
    • 15,461 Posts
    • 63,827 Thanks
    Judi
    Of course it would, the first thing to be said to those men is - get out, as soon as possible. Of course getting out of a controlling relationship tends to mean losing home, possessions, family contact etc.
    Same applies to women too. Married or not.
    'Holy crap on a cracker!'
    • Comms69
    • By Comms69 29th Nov 17, 4:04 PM
    • 1,270 Posts
    • 1,033 Thanks
    Comms69
    Same applies to women too. Married or not.
    Originally posted by Judi
    absolutely. My original point was about lack of state sponsored support for men, but the consequences are often the same.
    • Tabbytabitha
    • By Tabbytabitha 29th Nov 17, 6:45 PM
    • 465 Posts
    • 912 Thanks
    Tabbytabitha
    Sorry but I know little of the benefit system. I thought that unmarried couples living together were already 'penalised' by the system in that they can't claim as if they were two separate entities.
    Originally posted by maman
    That's certainly true but I wouldn't describe it as being penalised.
    • Happier Me
    • By Happier Me 29th Nov 17, 6:55 PM
    • 392 Posts
    • 836 Thanks
    Happier Me
    There's been a lot in the media on this point this week. Today, for example, I read about someone who'd been given leave to appeal a decision that prevented her having a bereavement payout when her long term partner died as they weren't married. So it seems the establishment is questioning whether to recognise a cohabitee. However, on the other hand, the benefit system does take account of a live in partner whether married or not. It seems the whole thing is a construct of government and has unfairness and illogicality built in.
    I think the solution to some degree is in raising awareness. As adults we should take responsibility for ourselves and that is in understanding the repercussions of the decisions we make.

    There are pros and cons to marriage (and subsequently divorce) as there are in remaining unmarried. I know of people, male and female, that have literally been left with just the shirt on their backs after divorce, despite being the main or only earner and not always through choice. My brother in law is the only earner doing a job he despises and married to a woman that expects to be looked after. He does more than his fair share in the home too.

    On the other hand, how many people are unmarried because their partner is so set against it and the alternative is separation? Not marrying may well be a form of financial control in some relationships!
Welcome to our new Forum!

Our aim is to save you money quickly and easily. We hope you like it!

Forum Team Contact us

Live Stats

142Posts Today

2,867Users online

Martin's Twitter