Gay marriage

In the Netherlands, it has been possible for people of the same sex to marry each other since 2001. This means that two men or two women can marry each other in our country. This is by no means allowed in all countries in the world. In many countries it is even still a criminal offense to ‘be homosexual’. Yet there are more and more countries where same-sex marriage can be performed.

Same conditions

In fact, a marriage between two men or two women has the same conditions, rights and obligations as the marriage between a man and a woman. For example, the rules and conditions for entering into, concluding and terminating a marriage are the same. The obligations and rights of the partners towards each other are also the same. Two partners of the same sex can, just like a marriage between a man and a woman, marry under prenuptial agreements or in community of property.

A number of differences

Although a marriage between two people of the same sex is in most respects similar to a marriage between a man and a woman, there are some important differences. This could include the birth of a child during this marriage.

Birth of a child

If two women are married and a child is born, the woman who gave birth to the child is automatically the mother. The other woman is then not the other parent of the child. To become a mother, she must adopt the child. This legally makes her the official second mother. This rule also applies to two married men who have a child together. If one of them is the father of the child, then the other man must adopt the child to become a parent. In the case of a marriage between two women, they automatically receive joint custody of the child.

To land

Besides the Netherlands, there are only a few countries that accept same-sex marriage. These include Argentina, Belgium, Canada, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Iceland and Sweden. In the United States and Mexico, same-sex marriage is legal in some states.

Laws and regulations in another country

A married same-sex couple must therefore take into account the laws and regulations that apply to same-sex marriage in a particular country. This already has consequences when a same-sex married couple goes on holiday to a country that does not accept same-sex marriage. For example, a short stay often involves practical and possibly also social problems. In the event of emigration, legal problems may also arise. Even if a same-sex marriage is not recognized in a certain country, this does not mean that there are no consequences. For example, a country may not accept same-sex marriage, but it may recognize the property relationship between the spouses.

Refusal officer

Some marriage officials are against gay marriage and do not want same-sex couples to marry each other. A wedding officiant who refuses this is also called a refusing officiant. This term was first introduced in 2007.

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