Common Law Cohabiting Couples Get State Bereavement Benefits

Published / Last Updated on 31/01/2023

10 years of campaigning by various charities including the Child Poverty Action Group and the Childhood Bereavement Network have finally go the government to change their mind on unmarried, cohabiting couples and bereavement benefits for children.

Nearly 2,000 bereaved cohabiting families per year will benefit from MPs voting through Bereavement Benefits Remedial Order 2022.  This will mean that bereaved families with children even if not married or in a civil partnership at the time of death will now benefit from support.

In addition, and as part of a back payments system, over 20,000 families are likely to received child bereavement benefits of up to £9,800.


It is a good thing that bereaved children will now benefit irrespective of their parents’ marital status.  There will also be a 12-month period of grace for those families that were not entitled previously to be able to make a claim and help over 20,000 families.

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