The decision set a precedent for potential future cases regarding the 23 member states, certain British and Dutch territories, and the states with limited recognition excluding Kosovothat currently do not recognise same-sex couples' right to family life. Neither performed nor recognized in Niue, Tokelau or the Cook Islands Neither performed nor recognized in Northern Irelandthe dependency of Sark or the five Caribbean overseas territories. Over the years, the European Court of Human Rights ECtHR has handled cases that challenged the lack of legal recognition of same-sex couples in certain member states. In the United Kingdom, the Gender Recognition Act allows a person who has lived in their chosen gender for at least two years to receive a gender recognition certificate officially recognizing their new gender. With this, it became almost certain that the bill would pass. Prior to the legalisation of same-sex marriage, Germany was one of the first countries to legislate registered partnerships Eingetragene Lebenspartnerschaft for same-sex couples, which provided most of the rights of marriage.
Same-sex relations are illegal on much of the continent and are punishable by death [PDF] in Mauritania and Sudan, as well as in parts of Nigeria and Somalia.
Retrieved 12 February On 11 Januarythe northern state of Coahuilawhich borders Texas, passed a similar bill 20—13under the name Pacto Civil de Solidaridad Civil Pact of Solidarity. You may improve this sectiondiscuss the issue on the talk pageor create a new articleas appropriate. Prior to this, there were some disagreements with members of the three-party governing coalition on whether the bill had enough votes to pass.
The law only applies to England and Wales because Scotland and Northern Ireland are semi-autonomous and have separate legislative bodies to decide many domestic issues, including the definition of marriage.