The Office for National Statistics has revealed that in 2017 (the latest available official figures) the average age at which heterosexual couples got married reached an all-time high of 35.7yrs for women and 38yrs for men.
Marriage rates in that year were currently at their lowest level on record; and this is the result of a continuous period of decline which according to statistics, shows a 45% decrease since 1972.
The ONS also recorded further declines in the number of couples opting for religious ceremonies. These accounted for less than one in four marriages between opposite-sex couples – which is equivalent to 23% – the lowest on record.
Apparently, the most popular date for getting married in 2017 was 2nd September – when 4,370 couples tied the knot. Whereas the least popular date in 2017 was Christmas Day, with only three weddings having taken place.
Overall, there were a total of 242,842 marriages registered in 2017 which was 2.8% less than the previous year; and more than 1,000 couples converted their existing civil partnerships into marriage.
Included in the total above, there were 6,932 marriages between same-sex couples – 56% between female couples and 44% between males, which according to statistics is similar to the figures recorded in 2016.
It is highly anticipated that due to COVID-19 outbreak in 2020, a significant number of weddings will have been cancelled or postponed (including Princess Beatrice’s !!) so it’s fair to assume that these figures will decline massively again in 2020/2021.
The number of couples choosing to live together unmarried continues to increase. On this basis, it is generally agreed between family lawyers that properly thought-out legislation for cohabitees rights should now become a priority; especially since cohabitees are often reliant upon property law, which can be extremely complex.
Property law also does not provide cohabitees (particularly ones who have lived together for a number of years) with any share of a partner’s pension fund or right to maintenance.
Therefore, we feel it is prudent for cohabiting couples to consider a cohabitation agreement to protect their loved ones.
If there are any aspects of a cohabitation agreement or advice needed relating to property or financial matters, especially where a cohabiting relationship is under pressure or breaking down, feel free to contact one of the family team here at Price Slater Gawne who can advise you further:
Our expert solicitors have over 50 years of combined, hands-on experience when it comes to cohabitation agreements and relationship breakdowns, and they will ensure that your case is dealt with promptly, efficiently and in a cost-effective manner.
We can correspond with you by email and we can arrange interviews by phone, Skype, Facetime or Zoom.