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Content about Family law

February 25, 2015

Civil partnership ceremonies were scrapped in 2012

Queensland is making moves to reinstate state-sanctioned civil union ceremonies for gay couples.

The state attorney-general, Yvette D'Ath, said Wednesday(25 February) the new Labor government would make good on an election pledge and re-introduce civil partnership ceremonies after they were scrapped in 2012.

'It’s something that I’m getting briefings on as we speak,' she told Fairfax Radio.

'We have made it clear we will change it back. We’re putting in place (measures) to do that now.'

February 23, 2015

State government calls for review of family law

Victoria is one step closer to allowing gay adoption after the state government made good an election pledge and called for a review of family law.

The Labor government commissioned the review, to be led by Eamonn Moran PSM QC, to determine what legal changes are needed to permit adoption by same-sex couples under Victorian law.

The Moran is to report to state equalities minister, Martin Foley, by 8 May.

February 14, 2015

Close to half of Americans know a gay couple who has been married

A study sponsored by the Human Rights Campaign shows a majority of US voters are for gay marriage.

February 12, 2015

Government says treating same-sex unions differently is unconstitutional

A bill to allow gay marriage and adoption in Slovenia passed its first hurdle Tuesday (10 February) as a parliamentary committee backed the measure after several hours of debate.

The committee on labor, family, social affairs and the disabled voted in favor of making marriage law gender neutral by 11 votes to two.

The amendment was proposed by the opposition party, United Left, which said that marriage applies to two people – regardless of gender.

February 10, 2015

'Nepal will have the marriage equality law, it's just a matter of time'

Nepal should legalize gay marriage, says a committee charged with implementing a 2007 Supreme Court ruling to improve LGBTI rights in the south Asian country.

The same-sex marriage study committee, led by former secretary of the ministry of health and population Laxmi Raj Pathak, finally submitted its report yesterday (9 February), more than four years after its formation.

February 5, 2015

Amendment to gun legislation challenges the state's ban on gay marriage

Nebraska may have just accidentally recognized gay marriage despite a state ban on same-sex unions.

The Nebraska Legislature yesterday (4 February) voted 38 to 0 in favor of an amendment to a bill that would waive the 180-day residency period for military spouses who want to apply for gun permits.

Sen Paul Schumacher of Columbus proposed the amendment, which applies to 'anyone receiving the federal benefits of a military spouse.'

February 3, 2015

Richard Perrins is a solicitor at leading specialist fertility and family law firm Natalie Gamble Associates. Here he explores what happens when same-sex couples break up and decide to divorce or dissolve their partnership

Same sex marriage is now legal in England and Wales, which is cause for much celebration.

However, sadly and inevitably not all relationships will survive and understanding the process to end the legal relationship will be important.

Here is a basic guide, for those living in England and Wales, to the process for divorce and the dissolution of civil partnerships: the process is virtually identical save for a few exceptions identified below.

What is divorce/dissolution?

February 2, 2015

A poll has revealed that although most Italians now support civil unions, many remain opposed to gay marriage or adoption – while being in favor of legalizing prostitution

A public poll carried out in Italy has found that opposition to same-sex marriage has risen in the past 12 months and that many in the country remain opposed to the idea of gay adoption, reports ANSA.

February 1, 2015

Peter Morris, a partner, and Sue Parkinson, a trainee solicitor, with UK-based law firm Irwin Mitchell, look at some of the legal complications that may be involved with adopting; some of which can arise after a child has already joined your home

Adoption is permanent, involving the severing of ties between a child and their birth family.

Adoption is a positive way of assisting children to find a permanent, safe and loving home, and the child’s lifelong welfare is the paramount consideration.

Gay and lesbian singles as well as same-sex couples can adopt a child in the UK.

There are clear examples of a same sex placement being the best option for the child. These can include cases involving children with a background of emotional or physical abuse from a parent of a particular gender.

January 30, 2015

Top court breaks a long-standing agreement between the two countries

France's highest appeals court Wednesday (28 January) allowed a gay man to marry his Moroccan partner, despite the North African kingdom's refusal to recognize same-sex marriage.

France legalized gay marriage in 2013. However, a 1981 agreement said marriages between French and Moroccan nationals were subject to the laws of their respective countries.

Dominique and Mohammed first took the case to court after a city hall in France had refused to wed them, citing the 1981 convention.

January 29, 2015

The UK’s Office of National Statistics has released some new figures on the number of same-sex couple families living in the UK

According to newly-released statistics from the UK’s Office of National Statistics (ONS), co-habiting couples – both opposite-sex and same-sex – are the fastest growing family type in the UK.

The data is included in the ONS’ Families and Households, 2014 report, which revealed that cohabiting couple families grew by 29.7% between 2004 and 2014.

January 25, 2015

Same-sex marriage is now legal in the state – and couples who wish to jointly adopt will have to get hitched if they want to both be parents

The Virginia Senate committee rejected a proposal on Friday to extend adoption rights to the partners of unmarried gay partners.

Same-sex marriage is now legal in Virginia. However, not all same-sex couples wish to marry.

January 24, 2015

Figures released by the Department of Education show 300+ kids went to live with same-sex parents last year

The number of children formally adopted by same-sex parents in the UK has sharply increased over the last four years, according to reports from the Department of Education.

The figures show that 180 children were adopted by gay couples last year, while 150 went to live with lesbian parents.

This is up from the total of 120 children who were adopted by same-sex couples in 2011, according to The Telegraph.

January 23, 2015

Third time lawmakers reject full adoption rights for same-sex couples

Portugal's parliament yesterday (22 January) rejected draft laws that would allow gay couples to adopt children for the third time, although the vote margin was smaller than ever.

The bills were all defeated by some 30 votes in the Lisbon assembly, which 220 deputies attended.

The majority ruling right refused to back similar measures in 2012 and 2013.

The assembly legalized gay marriage in 2010, but expressly excluded the right for the couples to adopt a child together.

January 22, 2015

Republican members of the Colorado State Senate have used their political weight to kill a bill to clean up the state’s civil unions law in the wake of the legalization of same-sex marriage in the state simply to be obstructive

A group of influential Republican Colorado state senators have used their numbers on the Senate State Affairs Committee to block a law to clarify the state’s civil unions law even though the bill would have prevented gay bigamy.

Colorado passed a bill creating civil unions for same-sex couples in 2013 but the striking down of its ban on same-sex marriage by the courts has created legal complications for same-sex couples who end their relationships in that they will have to divorce twice if they married after entering into a civil union.

January 21, 2015

In 2014 June, seven same-sex couples challenged the state's ban and its refusal to honor gay marriages from other states

A US judge put the brakes on a suit against North Dakota's prohibition against same-sex marriage.

According to local radio station KFGO, District Chief Judge Ralph Erickson issued his order on Tuesday (20 January).

January 15, 2015

Top court says the law contravenes the European Human Rights Convention

Austria's top court yesterday (14 January) lifted a ban on gay adoption, bringing the country into line with many other EU countries.

The Constitutional Court said the law contravened the European Human Rights Convention.

Explaining the decision, chief judge Gerhart Holzinger said there was 'no objective argument for a differing rule based solely on sexual orientation' of the parents.

Previously, only married couples were allowed to adopt but gay marriage is not legal in Austria.

January 13, 2015

Gay couple married in England are hoping to have their marriage recognized in Northern Ireland

A gay couple married in England could be the key in same-sex marriages being recognized in Northern Ireland.

In a court ruling this week, to be heard at Belfast high court, a decision could lead to the UK as a whole allowing gay couples to get legally married.

The couple, who have asked to remain anonymous, will call on Northern Ireland to make a declaration their marriage remains lawfully constituted where they are living now and should be recognized on Thursday (15 January).

John O'Doherty, director of The Rainbow Project, is backing the couple.

January 13, 2015

The women, who married in November and adopted two young boys in December, are believed to the first same-sex couple to legally adopt in the state

A same-sex couple made history last month when they adopted two young boys in Oklahoma.

An attorney acting for the female couple said that she believed it to be the first such same-sex adoption to legally take place in the state.

The adoption was granted on 19 December but the couple’s attorney, Terri Craig, only spoke out about the case this week.

The couple, from Okmulgee County, have chosen to remain anonymous but are happy for their case to be publicized.

January 6, 2015

Gay couples can now hold symbolic weddings without interference or fines

Gay marriage is no longer banned in Vietnam under an amendment to marriage law that came into effect on 1 January.

Same-sex couples can now hold symbolic weddings and cohabitate without interference or fines from authorities.

However, they will not receive the same rights as straight married couples, a halfway point some lawmakers have hailed as the first step towards marriage equality.

January 5, 2015

Governor Butch Otter says that children are best raised by opposite-sex couples, and that’s why same-sex marriage should again be made illegal in the state

Same-sex marriage was made legal in Idaho last October. Since that time, dozens of gay couples have tied the knot.

However, Republican Governor Butch Otter and Attorney General Lawrence Wasden – both staunch opponents of gay marriage – refuse to give up the fight.

Last week, they both filed petitions to the Supreme Court, asking it to overrule the decision made in October by the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.

January 3, 2015

'My office will not stand in the way as clerks of court determine how to proceed'

It looks like Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi will not block LGBTI couples from marrying.

The southern state's legal advisor issued a statement in response to federal district Judge Robert Hinkle's ruling all Florida clerks must provide same-sex marriage certificates come 6 January.

December 30, 2014

Following a law change that came into effect on 16 December, Scotland’s first same-sex weddings will take place on Hogmanay

The first gay weddings are due to take place in Scotland after the stroke of midnight tonight.

The Scottish Parliament legalized same-sex marriage in February of this year, and the new law came into effect on 16 December.

On that date, anyone wishing to marry was able to give notice to marry: an obligatory 15-day period. This means that the first wedding ceremonies will take place tomorrow – the last day of the year.

December 29, 2014

The Republican Attorney General has consistently opposed the ban on same-sex marriage being lifted in the state

The Tampa Bay Times has awarded Florida Attorney General, Pam Bondi, its ‘Loser of the Year 2014’ award, labeling the Republican legal advisor a ‘modern-day Anita Bryant’.