Landmark Ruling – Unmarried Woman entitled to late partner’s pension

A woman was denied access to her late partner’s work pension, because they were not married.

Denise Brewster had argued that she was a victim of discrimination and took her case to the UK’s Highest Court.  The Supreme ruled in her favour on Wednesday 8 February 2017.

The legal argument run was that “as a bereaved cohabitee (rather than widow), the survivor was denied the pension, which caused her huge distress and financial hardship”.

This is a huge shift in the Law when it comes to cohabitees.  The background was that Miss Brewster and her partner had been engaged shortly before he passed away and they had been together for 10 years, owning their own home.  The partner had died suddenly in Christmas 2009, 2 days after they had got engaged.

This is a Supreme Court decision that perhaps may have an impact on future cohabitee rights and not just pension rights.

At Forbes we have specialist teams who are able to assist with any family law queries. For further information please contact our Family team via email or phone 0800 689 1058. Alternatively send any question through to Forbes Solicitors via our online Contact Form.

Rubina Vohra

About Rubina Vohra

Rubina Vohra is a solicitor within the Family department at Forbes Solicitors. Rubina’s blogs cover her specialisms of all aspects of marriage breakups and separation with a heavier slant towards divorce, children and finances. Rubina also writes about changes in the law and report on topical/current high profile cases.

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