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Latest civil partnership figures emphasise need to consider all types of modern families: Resolution

Civil partnerships rose by 3% in 2016

Resolution has urged professionals and politicians to keep in mind all types of modern families, including civil partners and cohabiting couples, when considering how to deal with relationship breakdown, in the light of new figures from the Office for National Statistics which show that civil partnerships in 2016 rose by 3.4% compared with the previous year.

Speaking in response to the figures, Resolution spokesperson on civil partnerships, Graeme Fraser, said:

"The increase in civil partnerships, for the first time since the introduction of same sex marriages, demonstrates how modern families are changing. It's important that the law keeps up.

"These figures will be of interest to policymakers and anyone monitoring the debate about extending civil partnerships to heterosexual couples - who may also wish to choose this way of marking their commitment to each other over marriage.

"Clearly more same sex couples chose a civil partnership in 2016 than in 2015. Sadly, it therefore stands to reason that dissolutions are also on the rise, by nearly 9% last year.

"It's therefore vital that professionals and politicians keep in mind all types of modern families, including civil partners and cohabiting couples, when considering how to deal with relationship breakdown.

"None of this should detract from the fundamental need for the public to be fully aware of the limited rights of cohabiting couples in England and Wales, and the steps they can take to protect their legal position, particularly when it comes to housing.

"Most importantly, there remains the pressing need for legislation to provide cohabiting couples with basic rights should they separate, to protect some of the most vulnerable in society, and particularly their children."

There were 890 civil partnerships formed in England and Wales in 2016. More than two-thirds (68%) of all civil partnerships formed in 2016 were between men, the highest proportion since their introduction in 2005. Almost half (49%) of those entering a civil partnership in 2016 were aged 50 or above; this compares with 19% in 2013, prior to the introduction of marriages of same-sex couples.

There were 1,313 civil partnership dissolutions granted in England and Wales in 2016, of these 60% were to female couples.

For the full statistics, click here.

29/9/17