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Legal recognition of
same-sex couples
Same-sex marriage

Belgium
Canada
Netherlands
Norway

South Africa
Spain
Sweden

Performed in some jurisdictions

Mexico: DF*
United States: CT, DC*, IA, MA, NH, VT, Coquille

Recognized, not performed

Israel
United States: CA (conditional), NY

Civil unions and
registered partnerships

Andorra
Austria
Colombia
Czech Republic
Denmark
Ecuador
Finland
France
Germany
Greenland

Hungary
Iceland
Luxembourg
New Caledonia
New Zealand
Slovenia
Switzerland
Wallis and Futuna
United Kingdom
Uruguay

Performed in some jurisdictions

Argentina: BA, RC, RN, VCP
Australia: ACT, TAS, VIC
Mexico: COA
United States: CA, CO, HI, ME, NJ, NV, OR, WA, WI
Venezuela: ME

Recognized, not performed

Isle of Man (UK only)

Unregistered co-habitation

Argentina
Australia
Brazil

Croatia
Israel
Portugal

In some regions

United States: MD, RI

Status in other jurisdictions

Albania
Aruba
Bolivia
Bulgaria
Burundi
Cambodia
Chile
China (PRC)
ROC (Taiwan)
Congo (DRC)
Costa Rica
Cuba
Dominican Republic
El Salvador
Estonia
European Union
Faroe Islands
Greece
Honduras
India
Ireland
Italy
Jamaica
Japan
Jersey

Kosovo
Latvia
Liechtenstein
Lithuania
Malta
Moldova
Montenegro
Nepal
Netherlands Antilles
Nigeria
Panama
Paraguay
Philippines
Poland
Romania
Russia
Serbia
Slovakia
Singapore
South Korea
Uganda
Ukraine
Venezuela
Vietnam

United States: AL, AS, AZ, DE, FL, GU, IL, LA, ME, MI, MN, MT, NM, NC, OH, PA, PR, RI, SC, UT, WV, WY, Native Americans

Notes

*DC (subject to Congressional review) and Mexico City same-sex marriage laws are effective from 1 March and 4 March 2010, respectively.

See also

Same-sex marriage
Same-sex marriage legislation
Timeline of same-sex marriage
Civil union
Domestic partnership
Registered partnership
Civil partnership
Listings by country

LGBT portal

Since 1 August 2001, Germany has allowed registered partnerships (Eingetragene Lebenspartnerschaft) for same-sex couples. These partnerships initially provided many but not all of the rights of marriage, and currently provide all except joint adoption and full tax benefits. As of 22 October 2009, the Federal Constitutional Court of Germany has ruled that all the rights and obligations of marriage be extended to same-sex registered partners[1].

Contents

History

The Life Partnership Act of 2001 was a compromise between proponents of marriage equality for gays and conservatives from the Christian parties, whose interpretation of marriage exclude gays. The act grants a number of rights enjoyed by married, opposite-sex couples. It was drafted by Volker Beck from the The Greens and was approved under the Green/Social Democratic coalition government.

On 17 July 2002, the Federal Constitutional Court of Germany upheld the act. [2] The Court found, unanimously, that the process leading to the law's enactment was constitutional. The 8-member Court further ruled, with three dissenting votes, that the substance of the law conforms to the constitution, and ruled that these partnerships could be granted equal rights to those given to married couples. (The initial law had deliberately withheld certain privileges, such as joint adoption and pension rights for widow(er)s, in an effort to observe the "special protection" which the constitution provided for marriage and the family. The court determined that the "specialness" of the protection was not in the quantity of protection, but in the obligatory nature of this protection, whereas the protection of registered partnerships was at the Bundestag's discretion.)

On 12 October 2004, the Gesetz zur Überarbeitung des Lebenspartnerschaftsrechts (Life Partnership Law (Revision) Act) was passed by the Bundestag, increasing the rights of registered life partners to include, among other things, the possibility of stepchild adoption and simpler alimony and divorce rules, but excluding the same tax benefits as in a marriage. By October 2004, 5,000 couples had registered their partnerships. By 2007, this number had increased to 15,000, two thirds of these being male couples.[3]

In July 2008, Federal Constitutional Court of Germany ruled that a transsexual person who transitioned to female after having been married to a woman for more than 50 years could remain married to her wife and change her legal gender to female. It gave the legislature one year to effect the necessary change in the relevant law. (La Presse)

On 22 October 2009, the Constitutional Court ruled that a man whose employer had given him and his registered partner inferior pension benefits on account of his not being married was entitled to the same benefits he would receive were he and his partner married and of opposite sexes.[4]. The court's decision mandated equal rights for same-sex registered couples not just in regard to pension benefits, but in regard to all rights and responsibilities currently applying to married couples.[5]

On 25 October 2009, the Government Programme of the new Christian Democratic-Free Democratic coalition was released. It stipulated that any inequality of rights between (same-sex) life partners and (opposite-sex) married couples would be removed. This would essentially codify into law the Constitutional Court's ruling of 22 October 2009. However, the Government Programme did not mention adoption rights.[6]

Same-sex marriage

Under the current leadership it is difficult to ascertain whether full same-sex marriage will be legalised. The Green Party[7] and the The Left have acknowledged their support of the legalization of same-sex marriage. The Greens, in opposition, released a draft law on same-sex marriage in June 2009.[8]

Public opinion

In December 2006, a poll conducted by the Angus-Reid Global Monitor, seeking public attitudes on economic, political, and social issues for member-states of the European Union found that Germany ranked seventh supporting same-sex marriage with 52% popular support, behind the Netherlands (82%), Sweden (71%), Denmark (69%), Belgium (62%), Luxembourg (58%), and Spain (56%) (sharing this position with the Czech Republic); German attitudes on this social issue were above the European Union average of 44%. [9]

See also

Recognition of same-sex partners for purposes of immigration

Non-EU citizens who are same-sex partners of EU-citizens are considered on the same standing as spouses for the purposes of immigration rights.

References

  1. ^ Verfassungsgericht zu Homo-Ehe - Ehe, Partner, Kinder
  2. ^ Federal Constitutional Court of Germany:Urteil des Ersten Senats vom 17. Juli 2002 (german)
  3. ^ http://destatis.de/jetspeed/portal/cms/Sites/destatis/Internet/DE/Presse/pm/zdw/2008/PD08__037__p002,templateId=renderPrint.psml (in German)
  4. ^ High court backs equal rights for gay marriages
  5. ^ Verfassungsgericht zu Homo-Ehe - Ehe, Partner, Kinder
  6. ^ [1]
  7. ^ [2]
  8. ^ [3]
  9. ^ Eight EU Countries Back Same-Sex Marriage

External links








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