19 December 2015 marked the ten year anniversary of civil partnerships in the UK.
Since same-sex marriage laws were established in England Wales and Scotland in 2014, 9,000 of the 140,000 same-sex couples who entered into a civil partnership have converted their partnership into a marriage.
When you convert a civil partnership into a marriage you can get it backdated to the day when you first became civil partners. This has proven a popular option in the UK.
The numbers of people entering into civil partnerships have dropped off since the introduction of same-sex marriage in the UK, with many couples choosing marriages over civil partnerships. However, gay couples can still opt to have a civil partnership.
Why Would You Choose a Civil Partnership Over Getting Married?
Some couples desire an alternative to marriage and see civil partnerships as a better, modern egalitarian substitute. Yet the future of civil partnerships is unknown. For now, they continue to provide gay couples with legal recognition and rights.
Civil partners have the same rights as married couples on most things other than pensions as we highlighted in our blog Same-Sex Couples Need Pensions Equality.
For a full list of the legal rights you gain when entering into a civil partnership see our advice guide on civil partnerships.
What Could Happen to Civil Partnerships in the Future?
In the future civil partnerships could either be phased out or opened up to heterosexual couples.
Slater and Gordon senior family lawyer Caroline Watson said: “It would be a shame if the UK Government decided to phase out civil partnerships. I think an alternative option should be open to LGBT and straight couples, even if only a small number of people opt for this in practice.
“When the Government consulted the public in 2012 there was overwhelming support to keep civil partnerships and allow straight couples the option as well.”
For an initial consultation about civil partnerships call the family solicitors at Slater and Gordon Lawyers on freephone 0800 916 9055 or contact us online and we’ll be happy to help.