Cohabitation Guide co-authored by Cartridges partner raises funds for Community Legal Help Desk at Exeter County Court.

12 August 2013

In April 2003 Bridget Garrood, Cartridges accredited cohabitation specialist and head of our family law finance team, collaborated with specialist barrister Elissa Da Costa-Waldman of Clerks Room in writing a procedural guide for family lawyers which they have now re visited due to significant procedural changes and the need to make every effort to avoid ending up in court. Their latest article : “Cohabitation Claims: 10 years on” was published exactly 10 years later in the April 2013 edition of Family Law magazine.  You can download a copy of this article by clicking the PDF document to the right of this news item.


Cartridges partner Bridget Garrood has been accredited by Resolution for over 12 years as a specialist family law solicitor not only in the field of pensions on divorce, but also in Cohabitation, which is the tricky legal minefield of advising people who are of have been living together as a couple but are neither married nor in a civil partnership. Specialist advice is essential for people who are living together and wish to arrange their financial and property affairs – for example by making a will or deed of trust or by entering a formal written Cohabitation Agreement. Sadly most people do not realise that there are few, if any, rights available if the relationship breaks down and find out the hard way that there is no such thing as “common law marriage”. Instead they may have to bring claims in court and follow strict rules which are not the everyday work of the non-specialist family lawyer. Bridget and Elissa are keen to share their expertise and their latest article is the first in a series of three to be published this year.


The authors’ fees in writing this article are donated to the Wainwright Walk to raise funds for the Community  Legal Help Desk in memory of the late Exeter District Judge Jill Wainwright.  The Community Legal Help Desk is a free service at the Exeter Combined Court Centre, and is staffed by law student volunteers from Exeter University.  Members of our staff took part in the walk earlier in the year – for a full report click here    


You can find out more about Elissa here 


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  • "Thank you so much Penny! You are a brilliant solicitor - knowledgeable, wise, kind, and enormously understanding of a very difficult situation. So, I depend on you for all that and I thank you from the bottom of my heart. I wish I had found you sooner."

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