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Civil Marriage

civil-marriageAs a family law firm in Edinburgh we are often asked what the difference is between a civil partnership and a civil marriage. There are many legal requirements for both but let us try and explain some of the differences first before you decide on a civil marriage.

Civil marriage or civil partnership?

Married couples cannot call themselves civil partners for legal purposes. Civil partners cannot call themselves married for legal purposes. Marriages can be conducted through either a civil ceremony, or a religious ceremony. The formation of a civil partnership is an entirely civil event. Civil partners can choose to add a ceremony to follow the formation of their civil partnership but this does not form part of the formation. A civil marriage is registered on paper, in a hard copy register. The details of civil partnerships are recorded in an electronic register. Marriage certificates include the names of only the fathers of the parties. Civil partnership certificates include the names of both parents of the parties.
A civil marriage can be annulled for the following reasons: If either party did not validly consent to the marriage. If either party was suffering from a mental disorder of such a kind as to render them unfit for marriage. If at the time of the marriage the respondent was suffering from a venereal disease in a communicable form. If the respondent was pregnant at the time of the marriage by some person other than the petitioner. If an interim gender recognition certificate has been issued to either party after the marriage. If a full gender recognition certificate has been issued as at the date of the marriage to the respondent.

A civil partnership can be annulled for the following reasons: If either party did not validly consent to the civil partnership formation. If either party was suffering from a mental disorder of such a kind as to render them unfit for civil partnership. This is not a ground for annulling a civil partnership. If the respondent was pregnant at the time of the civil partnership formation by some person other than the applicant. If an interim gender recognition certificate has been issued to either party after the formation of the civil partnership. If a full gender recognition certificate has been issued as at the date of the civil partnership to the respondent.

Civil marriage – what happens in divorce?

Marriage is ended by divorce, by obtaining a decree absolute. Some effects of marriage of the couple end on the issue of the decree nisi. A marriage can be ended on the ground that the marriage has broken down irretrievably, relying on one or more of the following facts: Adultery and the petitioner finds it intolerable to live with the respondent. Unreasonable behaviour. Desertion for 2 years Separation for 2 years (with the respondent’s consent to the divorce). Separation for 5 years (no consent required).

Civil partnerships are ended by a dissolution order. Some effects of civil partnership of the couple are ended on the issue of an interim order of dissolution. A civil partnership can be dissolved on the ground that the partnership has broken down irretrievably, relying on one or more of the following facts: This is not a fact which could be relied on for ending a civil partnership. Unreasonable behaviour. Desertion for 2 years. Separation for 2 years (with the respondent’s consent to the dissolution). Separation for 5 years (no consent required).

We are sure that you will agree that when it comes to a civil marriage there is a minefield of questions and answers which is why you should contact our team of Family Lawyers in Edinburgh for the very best advice.