Written evidence from Mr John Russell [HAB0300]
MPs on the House of Commons Women and Equalities Committee have said they want cohabiting couples to have the same financial rights as those who are married.
The committee chair, Conservative MP Caroline Nokes, said: “It is surprising they do not share the same legal rights as others given that cohabitation is now the fastest growing family unit.”
The committee appears to have already concluded that this is what they want to do before addressing the obvious first question “Why are fewer couples choosing the security that traditional marriage offers, and what can the government do to encourage marriage.
Traditional marriage between a man and a woman has been the bedrock of society for centuries. It formalises a commitment and, in turn confers legal rights on the union.
Where children are concerned, it is fairly evident that their life chances are improved if they are brought up by their natural married parents.
The government should be looking at tax breaks etc to encourage marriage.
The escalating costs of weddings, partially as a result of the “Wedding Planning Industry” is seen as a disincentive to getting married, however a basic, no frills, registry office ceremony can cost as little as £100. (This could be a taxable allowance)
This simple formalisation of a commitment to each other surely gives couples the financial protection they need, and reduces the financial burden on the state of failed partnerships.
IT IS SURELY SELF EVIDENT THAT FINANCIAL RIGHTS SHOULD BE DEPENDENT ON A FORMAL LEGAL COMMITMENT