Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill: A breakdown

The Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill has passed into law in England and Wales after being granted royal assent.

The Act will:

  • Allow same sex couples to marry in civil ceremonies
  • Allow same sex couples to marry in religious ceremonies (where the religious organisation has "opted in"' to conduct such ceremonies and the minister of religion agrees)
  • Protect those religious organisations and their representatives who don't wish to conduct marriages of same sex couples from successful legal challenge
  • Enable civil partners to convert their partnership to a marriage if they wish
  • Enable married individuals to change their legal gender without having to end their marriage

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Gay marriage passes into law

Gay marriage has officially become law in England and Wales.The Bill, which despite opposition was heavily backed by both MPs and peers, has finished its passage through Parliament.