Civil Partnerships – Your Questions Answered!

Wedding ceremony Civil partnership St Georges Hall Liverpool
Photo: Lucy Hannah Photography

Civil Partnerships – Your Questions Answered!

Did you know that as of December 31, 2019, mixed sex partners could enter into a Civil Partnership in the UK? Although this option of forming a legal relationship between two people has been available to same-sex couples for some years, it is only now that this option has opened up to all couples. You may have some questions about what this is and if it may be an option for you and your partner. We take a look at some of the big questions below…

What is a Civil Partnership?

A Civil Partnership is a legally recognised relationship with many of the same benefits as legal marriage. It was introduced in 2004 applying to same-sex couples, who could not legally marry until 2014.

Why might you want a Civil Partnership?

You may want a Civil Partnership if you want to have the legal benefits of marriage in regards to taxes, pensions, and inheritances, but perhaps don’t want the traditional or religious connotations associated with “marriage”.

What does it involve?

A Civil Partnership takes place with a registrar. It doesn’t involve exchanging vows, songs, or readings. It is simply legal once you’ve both signed the paperwork! You do not have to have any type of ceremony to be joined as Civil Partners.

St georges Hall Liverpool civil partnership Liverpool Wedding
Photo: Lucy Hannah Photo

Who are Civil Partnerships for?

As of December 31, 2019, any couple over the age of 16 and not closely related can enter into a Civil Partnership. If you dislike the traditional titles of “husband and wife” or disagree with the traditional vows or implications of marriage, then a civil partnership may be an option for you to have legal rights as a couple but without the implications of the traditional marriage.

Where can you perform a Civil Partnership?

You can either conduct your Civil Partnership at a registry office or at a venue registered with the council.

Do you have to give notice?

Yes, you must give at least 28 days notice of your intention to form a Civil Partnership at the register office where you and your partner live. You then have 12 months to actually form the Civil Partnership.

Do we need witnesses?

Yes you will need 2 witnesses and the registrar to witness you sign the Civil Partnership Schedule, which is the legal document that you are required to sign in order to form a Civil Partnership.

do you need witnesses for a civil partnership Liverpool

Can we have a ceremony?

Yes you can have a ceremony at the registry office or venue, it just cannot involve any religious aspects, the same as with a civil marriage ceremony.

Hopefully this has answered some of the questions you may have about Civil Partnerships. For more in depth information, check out this guide from Citizens Advice.

Are you and your partner having a Civil Partnership? Let us know about it in the comments, or on our Instagram or Facebook!

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