Contrary to popular belief, there is no such thing as a ‘Common Law Marriage’. Unmarried couples do not have the same rights as married couples and that is irrespective of how long you have been living together. It is best therefore to consider entering into a co-habitation agreement, which can deal with property rights and other responsibilities.
Unmarried couples should also consider making wills. That is because should you or your partner die without a will, that is to say ‘intestate’, the intestacy rules do not make any provision for surviving partners.