The Supreme Court of Austria approved same-sex marriages

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Austria’s highest court has legalised same-sex marriage and it will be possible for same-sex couples to tie the knot since 2019. Civil partnerships were introduced in the country 7 years ago but the MPs blocked all the attempts to legalize same-sex marriages. Until now. The Austrian Constitutional Court this week delivered a ruling, after two women from Vienna were not allowed to marry, and the court considered it as discrimination. The ruling stated: “The Constitutional Court nullified with a decision on December 4, 2017 the legal regulation that until now prevented such couples from marrying. The distinction between marriage and civil partnership can no longer be maintained today without discriminating against same-sex couples. [Under current law] people with same-sex sexual orientation are not equal to people with heterosexual orientation. The resulting discriminatory effect is seen in the fact that through the different title of the family status, people living in same-sex partnerships have to disclose their sexual orientation even in situations in which it is not, and must not be, relevant and are highly likely to be discriminated against.” The court set a deadline of the end of 2018 for the change to come into effect, meaning that same-sex marriages will begin from the start of 2019, but if the Austrian Parliament wants it to be sooner, there is such an option.

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