Washington state will convert thousands of existing same-sex domestic partnerships into marriages.
We’ve been building our lives together and the law has finally caught on.”
Monisha Harrell, the chair of Equal Rights Washington
The Washington introduced domestic partnerships back in 2007, and then same-sex marriage in 2012. On Monday, all existing partnerships in which at least one partner is currently under the age of 62 will be converted to marriages, and new partnerships will also be closed to those under the age of 62.
There are currently more than 6,500 domestic partnerships, most of which will be converted.
There will be no second-class recognition of gay and lesbian relationships. There will be marriage.”
Seattle Mayor Ed Murray
The move marks the final part of the state’s equal marriage legislation, passed in 2012 with 52% of the vote.
The UK has also announced that civil partnerships will remain as an option for same-sex couples despite the introduction of same-sex marriage, but that they would not be opened up to opposite-sex couples. The move followed a consultation into the future of civil partnerships, but no clear consensus could be reached.