The Civil Partnerships Act provides for same-sex couples the same legal benefits and responsibilities as marriage. The procedure for setting up a partnership mirrors that for civil marriage.
Same-sex couples have the option of :
- registering their partnership (Civil Partnerships Act 2005)
- registering their marriage from 29 March 2014
- converting their civil partnership to a marriage
Notice of civil partnership
It is a requirement that a 'notice of civil partnership' is given prior to the partnership being formed in the UK. A 'notice of civil partnership' is a legal declaration which must be completed by both the parties. When a couple have given their 'notices of civil partnership' the details are displayed on a public notice-board at the register office where the notice was given for a period of 28 days.
Couples subject to immigration control could have their notice period extended to 70 days if they are to be referred to the Immigration Enforcement Team.
After this time the civil partnership is authorised and may take place at any time over the next 12 months at the venue stated. If the venue is changed for any reason new notices of civil partnership will need to be given and will incur additional fees.