Civil Partnerships & Same Sex Relationships
Same sex couples currently have the choice of registering their relationship formally as a civil partnership. Many same sex couples have already taken this step, and we have been happy to advise a number of our clients on the formalisation of their relationship.
The effect of entering into a civil partnership with your partner is to place you in virtually the same position as a married spouse. You have a similar position on tax, state benefits, pensions, inheritance, and immigration. Children born of either partner are treated as children of your family and the non-biological parent’s relationship to the children is recognised in rights and responsibilities.
If you are thinking of entering into a civil partnership, we will advise you about all the implications. So, for example, some couples want to clarify what should happen regarding their finances in the event of separation. In this instance, you may want to draw up a pre-nuptial agreement. You must do this at least three weeks before your civil partnership ceremony takes place.
We can also act for you in the event that your civil partnership breaks down. In these circumstances, you will need to apply for a dissolution, the equivalent of divorce. We can assist you through the legal process of the dissolution, and in disentangling your finances. We can advise you and represent you in the event that the arrangements for the children are not agreed.
The UK Government is currently seeking to legalise same sex marriage which is presently not an option for same sex partners. Under the Gender Recognition Act 2004 a transgender person will enter into a civil partnership or marriage in line with their gender as recognised by their gender recognition certificate.
For advice on all aspects of civil partnerships contact Caroline Falkus.