Common-law spouse

Common law marriage does not carry any legal rights or responsibilities.

It is often assumed that, because a couple may have been 'common law' husband and wife for many years, the assets will automatically be transferred to the surviving partner on the death of their spouse. This is not the case and the term common-law spouse has no legal force.  You have no rights to your partner's estate unless a will has been drawn up to clarify that you will get an inheritance.


Living together and marriage: legal differences - Citizens Advice

Common law marriage - Family Lives



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