Anomaly hits same-sex marriage plans
On 29 March 2014, the Marriage (Same-Sex Couples) Act 2013 comes into force, which legalises same-sex marriages for the first time. However, warns solicitors, Cripps, those already in a civil partnership will have to dissolve their partnership before they can marry.
“The government has announced that section 9 of the Act, which allows for conversion of a civil partnership into a marriage, will not come into force before the end of 2014,” says Alex Davies, head of Family Law at Cripps.
“Until that time, those already in a civil partnership will not be able to marry until they have formally dissolved their civil partnership. The government has not yet decided how same-sex couples can convert their civil partnership to marriage but the conversion process will ensure that couples in civil partnerships do not have a break in their legal relationship, which could have implications for matters such as their pension entitlements.
“This highlights the anomaly that those already in a civil partnership may have won the right to be married more quickly if they had not taken advantage of their legal right to enter into a civil partnership.”