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Housing rights of cohabiting sole tenants

This content applies to England & Wales

Cohabiting couples where one of them is a sole tenant or sole licensee, where the relationship has broken down.

The section refers to all couples, whether heterosexual, lesbian or gay, unless stated otherwise. For most purposes, lesbian or gay couples that have become civil partners are treated in the same way as married heterosexual couples, and their position is dealt with in the section on Married/civil partners: sole tenant. For more information about relationship breakdown and domestic violence, see the section on Domestic violence.

Relationship breakdown law

The legislation for cohabiting couples experiencing a relationship breakdown who occupy under a sole tenancy or sole licence. 

Occupation rights

The rights that cohabiting couples have to occupy the home where the property is in one name only. 

Occupation disputes

Different ways occupation disputes can be resolved. 

Staying in the home long term

Ways in which decisions can be made as to who stays in the home in the long term. 

Paying rent

Liability for rent following the breakdown of a relationship. 

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