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Civil Partnership Bill introduced 01/10/2019 Mixed sex couples will be able to enter a civil partnership for the first time under new legislation introduced to the Scottish Parliament

Civil Partnership Bill introduced

Mixed sex couples will be able to enter a civil partnership for the first time under new legislation introduced to the Scottish Parliament.

The Scottish Government consulted on two options for civil partnership in Scotland in 2018: scrapping civil partnership or making it available to mixed sex couples. It followed a Supreme Court ruling last year that the introduction of same sex marriage had resulted in the Civil Partnership Act 2004 no longer being compatible with the European Convention on Human Rights on equality grounds, because it denied mixed sex couples the opportunity to enter into civil partnerships, while same sex couples had the choice of either marriage or civil partnership.

“Fundamentally, extending civil partnerships to mixed sex couples is about equality, fairness and choice,” said Social Security and Older People Secretary Shirley-Anne Somerville. “This Bill means all couples will have the same choices if they decide they want to make a lasting commitment to each other through a legally recognised relationship. Just like same sex couples, mixed sex couples will be able to choose to enter into a civil partnership if they feel this is right for them."

Other countries where mixed sex civil partnership has already been introduced include the Netherlands and New Zealand. The UK Government has announced it will make mixed sex civil partnership available in England and Wales by the end of 2019 and will introduce the change through secondary legislation.
 

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