Australian same-sex couples will marry before High Court challenge

Same-sex couples will have just days to be able to marry in the Australian Capital Territory in December before the High Court hears the Australian Government’s challenge to the law

Australian same-sex couples will marry before High Court challenge
25 October 2013

Same-sex couples will have a brief window of opportunity to begin marrying in Australia despite the Australian Government’s challenge in the High Court.

The Australian Government had sought to expedite its challenge to the Australian Capital Territory’s (ACT) law allowing same-sex couples to marry under territory law and the court held a directions hearing today at 2.15pm.

However the case will not get a full hearing until mid-December and the ACT law comes into effect in early December – leaving a window in which same-sex couples will be able to marry before the court decides their constitutionality.

By December it is possible that same-sex marriage will have been legalized in the Australian states of Tasmania and New South Wales – with New South Wales to debate a bill on the issue next Thursday – something that may also weigh on the judges’ decision.

Campaigners for same-sex marriage in Australia say couples are already planning to travel to the ACT to marry in December from all over Australia.

‘The High Court decision to hear the case in December gives Australian same-sex couples the chance to finally marry in Australia for the very first time,’ Australian Marriage Equality deputy director Ivan Hinton said.

‘The window of opportunity may be small but I know of many Australian same-sex couples who will want to be amongst the first to be wed on Australian soil. People are excited. Families are already planning their trip to Canberra.

‘We continue to work actively with the ACT Government to ensure that we have the best chance of this law surviving the High Court challenge.’

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott has sought to discourage same-sex couples from marrying in the ACT but Hinton said couples should not be discouraged from marrying by the High Court challenge.

‘Making solemn, legally-binding vows of lifelong commitment will be an important moment for same-sex couples who marry in the ACT, regardless of the outcome of the High Court case.’

Abbott has said he would attend his sister’s same-sex wedding but also says he will never approve of same-sex marriage.



No thumbnail available

Meredith Baxter to marry for fourth time - but first time to a woman

The Family Ties star has been with girlfriend Nancy Locke since 2005
No thumbnail available

Cornwall Pride hits Hollywood

Hollywood film stars and their look-a-likes are invited to take part in Cornwall Pride this year
No thumbnail available

Idaho senators block anti-gay language bill

Idaho senators reject LGBT protection
The first legal challenge to the US Supreme Court marriage ruling happens today

The first legal challenge to the US Supreme Court marriage ruling happens today

A Kentucky county clerk has refused to issue marriage licenses; says her faith won't allow her name to appear on a marriage licence for a same-sex couple
No thumbnail available

Gay couple sue airline over sex-toy prank

US gay couple sues United Continental Airlines over claims staff removed a dildo from their luggage and taped it to the outside so others could see it at baggage claim
No thumbnail available

Ban Ki-moon urges more UN work on gay rights

United Nations Secretary General praises first controversial Human Rights Council debate on LGBT issues and wants more
No thumbnail available

Anti-gay slurs ruled hate speech in Mexico

The Mexican Supreme Court has ruled that two popular anti-gay slurs are hate speech and are not protected under freedom of speech in the country’s constitution
No thumbnail available

Gay Olympic swimmer Ari-Pekka Liukkonen named Finland’s Sports Role Model of 2014

Finnish Olympian Ari-Pekka Liukkonen came out publicly as gay in February of 2014 at the height of his career to protest the treatment of LGBTI people in Russia and he has now been named Sports Role Model of the Year
No thumbnail available

Lesbian candidate Christine Quinn emerges as Democratic favorite in NYC mayoral race

Leads in new poll and says beleagured rival Anthony Weiner not qualified
No thumbnail available

All Out celebrates one million members with new video

Pop stars Mika and Pharrell Williams lend music to video featuring stories of gay campaign group's members