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cohabitation rights

There are more unmarried couples living together in the UK than ever before. 2012 figures from the ONS show that 5.9m people are currently cohabiting in the UK – more than twice as many as in 1996 and 2 million more than ten years previous.

‘Common law’ husbands and wives aren’t recognised by the legal system

With so many couples living together without getting married, perceived wisdom is that they become ‘common law’ husband and wife, and therefore enjoy the same rights as a married couple. A public survey in 2008 confirmed this: over half (51%) of those surveyed thought that this was the case.

However this is a myth. Unless they’ve signed a legal cohabitation agreement, common law couples won’t share the same rights as married couples on a number of issues, including:

•    Inheritance – the law doesn’t automatically allow bereaved common law partners to inherit from each other.
•    Inheritance tax – provisions for increasing the inheritance tax threshold are in place for married couples, but not for a ‘common law husband and wife’.  
•    Co-owning assets – if, for instance, property is paid into by both common law partners but only in the name of one, the other partner may struggle to recover the assets that they would be entitled to in a marriage.

What is a cohabitation agreement?More...


company in administration

The British economy may be displaying showing signs of growth but there are still plenty of companies feeling the pinch in the post-recession UK. According to research from Deloitte, 1,833 businesses went into administration last year.  

If an employer has a series of debts that it can’t pay it has four choices: liquidation, receivership, a CVA/IVA or go into administration. Today, we’re going to look at how staff are affected in the event of administration.

What happens in administration

When a company chooses administration, it effectively asks an independent adjudicator, known as an Insolvency Practitioner, to take charge of the company.

The Insolvency Practitioner will restructure the company in an effort to prevent it from being liquidated and has the power to make anyone at the company redundant. More...


paternity leaveBecoming a father, whether for the first or fifth time, is always an exciting occasion. However alongside the sleepless nights and constant stream of nappies come the inevitable financial worries.

What can you expect at work when you become a Dad? What are your paternity rights under employment law? Let’s take a look:

How do I claim Paternity Leave?

To claim Paternity Leave, you need to inform your employer no less than 15 weeks before your baby is due. You must let them know about:
•    Your baby’s due date
•    When you’d like to take your Paternity Leave
•    How much leave you want

What Paternity Leave am I entitled to?

Most Dads are eligible for 2 weeks paid Paternity Leave, but you can take 1 week if you prefer.
To qualify for Paternity Leave, you need to be the father of the child, its registered adopter or the husband or partner of the mother. You must also be an employee that’s worked continuously for at least 26 weeks before the ‘qualifying week’ that occurs 15 weeks before the child’s due date. More...


Whether you’re buying a holiday home in Pembrokeshire, a property to commute from in Cardiff or somewhere new to share with a partner, thousands of people make the step towards owning a second home in Wales every year.

What’s more, with house prices on the rise, buying a second property could also be one of the best investments you could make. However, buying a second home can be very different to purchasing your first. What do you need to consider? More...


A recently-qualified nurse has won a Howells competition and moved into her first house without having to pay any conveyancing fees.

Emily Kitt, who grew up in Carmarthenshire, won the competition after giving our panel judges the most ‘compelling and worthy’ reason to benefit from the free service. Since qualifying as a mental nurse, Emily has been staying with her Grandmother in Glyngaer, Caerphilly and helping her care for her Grandfather who suffers from Alzheimer’s.

She won the prize after explaining on Facebook that her new house would allow her time to be close to her Grandparents and her place of work. The location of her new house – a two-bedroom property in Beddau, Pontypridd – means that she can still help to care for her Grandfather and cope with the disturbed sleep patterns that are often inherent in Alzheimer’s cases as well as take shopping to her Grandparents.

Emily said: “We’re a very close family. I want to carry on spending the time with my Grandparents, and helping them as well as have my independence and remain close to work. More...

With effect from 15th February 2015 EU Regulations on Consumer Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) allow consumers who bought our services online to submit their complaint via an online complaint portal.

We are required under the regulations to provide our clients the following information:-
  1. Link to the ODR platform - please follow the following link for further information (
  2. Our contact email address in case of a complaint under the ODR regulation – Andrea Coombes