Cohabitants – Legal and tax rights
A cohabitant is often referred to as a common law spouse. However, there is no gift or inheritance tax between spouses (individuals who are legally married) whereas gifts and inheritances between cohabitants are liable to capital acquisitions tax at 33%.
In addition, unlike married couples who have legal rights on separation or on the death of the first spouse (to an interest in the estate of the deceased spouse), cohabitants have limited rights which involves a court application for redress.
We can advise cohabitants on their rights under the Civil Partnership and Certain Rights and Obligations of Cohabitants Act 2010 and in relation to minimising capital acquisitions tax. Separately, we can advise on suitable wills to minimise capital acquisitions tax and to put suitable structures in place to protect the surviving cohabitant.
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