Florida governor signs bill allowing couples to shack up

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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Couples shacking up together are no longer breaking the law in Florida.

Gov. Rick Scott on Wednesday signed a bill to repeal the state’s largely unenforced prohibition on cohabitation. It was one of 20 bills he signed into law.

Under a law that has been on the books since 1868, a man and woman living together could be fined $500 and locked up in jail for 60 days. According to 2014 census data, there are nearly 438,000 unmarried male-female couples among 7.3 million Florida households.

The new law repeals the entire statute covering married or unmarried men and women “engaging in open behavior that is gross lewdness and lascivious.”

Florida is one of only a handful of states that still has a law making cohabitation illegal.

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