Slovenia’s Constitutional Court has ruled that the country’s law on inheritance and succession discriminates same-sex couples.
Speaking this morning (10 April) in the eastern European country’s capital, the court’s spokesman said ‘the Ljubljana’s parliament should fix the gap in six months’.
The new rules come after the case of two lesbian women from the Slovenian city of Koper. One of them appealed to the court after her partner died and she found she had no inheritance rights.
The Constitutional Court said that, regarding the inheritance and succession rules, a same-sex couple should have the same rights of a straight one.
Seven of the nine judges voted in favor of asking parliament to change the law.
In Slovenia there are already legally recognized civil unions for lesbian and gay partners, but the new rules should apply to the unregistered couples as well.
Slovenia’s famous gay activist Mitja Blazic told the news agencies: ‘This is history, finally.
‘But now we need a full pro-gay law and our parliament must rule that our social rights are not determined by our sexual orientation.’
Registered partnership for same-sex couples has been legal since 23 July 2006, with limited inheritance, social security and next-of-kin rights.
In July 2009 the Constitutional Court decided that the Registration of Same-Sex Partnerships Act (RSSPA) violated the right to non-discrimination on the ground of sexual orientation.
The court asked the parliament to remedy the ‘established inconsistency’ within six months.
In December 2009 the center-left government put forward a new Family Code. Its aim was to guarantee full equalization of same-sex unions with other family unions.
After the bill was stalled in the National Assembly for some time, a compromise version of the Code was passed in June 2011. It granted registered same-sex couples all rights of marriage, including step-child adoption, but stopped short of granting joint adoption rights and reserved the term ‘marriage’ as a union of ‘a man and a woman’.
But Slovenians rejected the new Code in a referendum last year, leaving just civil unions in place.