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Cohabitation on the rise in US

An increasing number of unmarried couples are living together in the US, according to a new study by the National Centre for Health Statistics.

Forty-eight per cent of women who moved in with men between 2006 and 2010 were not married, according to interviews conducted in those years. In 2002 43 per cent of couples were cohabiting and in 1995 only 34 per cent lived together without being married.

The study suggests that around 40 per cent of those relationships became marriages after three years, but 32 per cent of the couples remained as cohabitees.

Pamela J. Smock, director and research professor at the Population Studies Center at the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor said:

“It’s becoming more acceptable to be in a long-term, committed relationship without a legal document”.

By the age of 20 a quarter of women have lived with a man, and by the age of 30 this fraction increases to three quarters, the survey claims.

“The question becomes not who cohabits, but who doesn’t?”, Smock says.

Researchers interviewed a sample of nearly 13,000 women between 2006 and 2010 as part of the Federal National Survey of Family Growth and figures were compared to reports from previous years.


Photo  by foggydave via Flickr under a Creative Commons licence

The blog team at Stowe is a group of writers based across our family law offices who share their advice on the wellbeing and emotional aspects of divorce or separation from personal experience. As well as pieces from our family law solicitors, guest contributors also regularly contribute to share their knowledge.

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