Lords amendment: No. 2, in page 12, line 39, leave out "(1)".
I beg to move, That this House doth agree with the Lords in the said amendment.
With this it will convenient to discuss the following amendments:
No. 3, in page 12, line 40, after "couples)" insert "(a) in subsection (1)".
No. 4, in page 12, line 40, at end insert—
(b) in subsection (6), in the definition of "occupancy rights" (i) in paragraph (a) for the words from "not" to the end there shall be substituted the words "to continue to occupy the house;" and (ii) at the end there shall be inserted the words—"and, without prejudice to the generality of these rights, includes the right to continue to occupy or, as the case may be, to enter and occupy the house together with any child residing with the cohabiting couple"."
The definition of the occupancy rights of married couples in section 1 of the Amendments of Matrimonial Homes (Family Protection) (Scotland) Act 1981 is amended by clause 13(2) and 13(3) of the Bill. This group of amendments provide that the definition of the occupancy rights of cohabiting couples provided in section 18(6) of the 1981 Act is correspondingly amended. The amendments will make clear that a non-entitled partner's occupancy right is a right to occupy, including all rights normally inherent in the right to occupy, and is not merely a right not to be excluded, and also that the non-entitled partner's right to occupy the house includes the right to have with her any child residing with the cohabiting couple.This point vexed the Committee, and concern was expressed by the Opposition and by my hon. and learned Friend the Member for Perth and Kinross (Mr. Fairbairn). I hope that, without prejudice to the generality of the rights, the right to continue to occupy also allows for and includes the right to enter and occupy the house together with any child residing. I hope that this puts the point beyond doubt. Certainly it was not one of controversy for Members on either side of the Committee, but there was anxiety that we should make clear what rights were allowed for.
Question put and agreed to.