Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill - Commons Library Research Paper

Published 01 February 2013 | Research papers RP13/8

Amended 04 February 2013

Authors: Catherine Fairbairn, Oliver Hawkins, Nerys Roberts, Douglas Pyper, Djuna Thurley

Topic: Civil partnerships, Family law, Marriage

The Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill was introduced into the House of Commons on 24 January 2013 and is due to have its second reading debate on 5 February 2013. It would introduce civil marriage for same sex couples, and enable religious organisations to opt in to conduct same sex marriages if they wish to do so. The Bill includes provisions intended to protect religious organisations and individuals from being forced to conduct same sex marriages. The proposals have proved highly controversial with interested parties expressing strong opinions both for and against same sex marriage. The Bill would also enable civil partners to convert their partnership to a marriage and would enable married transsexual people to gain legal recognition in their acquired gender without having to end their marriage.

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