Prominent family lawyer Marilyn Stowe says:
The Office for National Statistics has just released its annual bulletin on Population estimates by marital status, the figures relating to 2015. These show a reduction in the percentage of over 16s who are married from 51.5% in 2014 to 50.6% in 2015. There is also an increasing percentage I those who are “single, never married” from 33.9% in 2014 to 34.5% in 2015. Both percentages show significant movement.
The numbers classed as single, never married will of course include those who are cohabiting. The 2015 ONS report says 9.5% of the population are “cohabiting, never married or civil partnered” compared with 9.0% in the 2014 report. The figure was only 6.8% back in 2002.
Part of the movement in these figures may of course be attributable to couples getting married later in life, but the shift in the space of a single year is quite substantial.
From my work as a family lawyer I still regularly see those in cohabiting arrangements, sometimes of many years in length, who are totally unaware of the financial pitfalls that not being married has if the relationship comes to an end.
Stowe Family Law is the UK’s largest family law firm.
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