The law treats an unmarried couple differently than the married ones. This discrimination still prevails in the law and the justice system. There are several matters where unmarried and married couples are treated differently. These matters include issues surrounding will, inheritance, capital gain taxes and problems regarding children. Unmarried couples are mostly less favoured by the law. They are treated as two separate individuals. While married couples are viewed as the same party. Most of the issues for both married and unmarried couple centre on money matters.
When it comes to laws like capital gain taxes married couple is viewed as a single party. However, in case of unmarried couple separate taxes must be paid by each partner. Such discrimination puts unmarried couples in a difficult position. Money matters are much worse for unmarried couples since they are viewed as separate entities in the eyes of the law. Same is the case with inheritance law. Inheritance applies to all those individuals who inherit the property. All beneficiaries must pay the tax as per inheritance tax laws. Inheritance tax laws are applied differently again to married and unmarried couples. If a couple is unmarried, the beneficiary has to pay a huge amount of inheritance tax in case the beneficiary owes some inheritance from the partner. The price of the property is rising at high speed, and so is the amount of tax for unmarried couples. However, the law is different for married couples. If one partner owes a property from the other partners, the state can forgo the amount of tax that is to be paid on the property inherited. Such are discriminations in the eyes of the law that treat married and unmarried couples differently. Unmarried couples must have equal rights as married couples. They must be respected the same way and should be given the opportunity to enjoy equal rights and liberty as married couples (Anon., 2013).
The main question that arises that to ask do married couples are at more benefit than unmarried ones or they deserve more perks than unmarried couples. Married couples share a commitment of a lifetime. They believe that they will stay married until death separates them. The arrival of children deepens their commitment to a certain set of responsibilities and the relationship. However recent research shows that married couple who are remarried, belong to poorer categories or marry at a young age are the verge of breakups more than those who are the married couple and belong to financially stable families. The married couple can break up as easily as any other unmarried couple. The unmarried couple also shares a lifelong commitment. They share responsibilities the same way as married couples, but unfortunately, they do not enjoy same benefits granted by law as married couples (Dyer, 2003).
In many countries, unmarried couples are increasing day by day. This is because people have shown their acceptance towards being unmarried than being married. People view marriage as a lifelong commitment where one particular gender maintains the superiority. To beat the traditional and conventional values, people particularly younger categories are supporting and favouring unmarried relationships. People fear the effects of divorce. Thus unmarried relationships are becoming popular day by day. A survey showed that about sixty-seven person of the population accepts unmarried relationships. However, the law remains behind. Despite huge acceptance by the public for unmarried relationships, the law still mistreats unmarried couples. People think the unmarried relationships are likely to end up soon than married ones. However, research studies suggest that unmarried couples live as long as married couples. Another survey shows that unmarried couples share the same set of values as married couples (Barlow, 2001).
There many several other laws that do not give unmarried couples same rights as married ones. In case of married couples when a child is born, both parents can register their names against the birth of a child. However, in case of unmarried couples, the only mother is registered with the birth of the child. Unmarried couples are still facing extreme difficulties in case of rights granted to them, despite the fact that unmarried couples are growing at a fast pace and people have shown their acceptance towards unmarried relationships. Unmarried married couples are not given the same privileges on separation than a married couple. In case of home sharing, married couples can share a home even if a partner has made a financials contribution to it or not. But the scenario is different for unmarried couples. They can share a home if it is possessed by one of them or both of them have made a certain financial contribution to it. In case of a married couple, if one of the partners dies and has left property behind, the court can make adjustments according to the need of the spouse and the family. However in case of an unmarried couple, a will is necessary; otherwise, the court has the right to take away the property from the surviving spouse (Haigh, 2015).
Thus the court and law still view married and unmarried couple differently. Inheritance laws, property sharing laws, capital gain tax regulation and many other laws tend to benefit married couples more than unmarried ones. Increasing number of unmarried relationships, high acceptance towards them in the society and sharing of same values as married couples makes unmarried relationships as strong as any other married relation. Thus both married and unmarried couples must be treated same in the eyes of the law.
Anon., 2013. Law on Married and Unmarried couples. [Online]
Available at: https://www.ukessays.com/services/example-essays/law/how-law-treats-married-and-unmarried-couples.php
[Accessed 6 April 2018].
Barlow, A. D. S. J. G. a. P. A., 2001. Just a Piece of Paper? Marriage and Cohabitation in Britain. Sage.
Dyer, C., 2003. Not married? Tough. [Online]
Available at: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2003/nov/11/law.gender
[Accessed 6 April 2018].
Haigh, S., 2015. Unmarried couples and consequences of separation. [Online]
Available at: https://www.taylorvinters.com/resource/unmarried-couples-consequences-separation/
[Accessed 6 April 2018].