Portugal lawmakers give preliminary approval to same-sex marriage bill

[JURIST] The Portuguese Parliament [official website, in Portuguese] on Friday approved a bill to legalize same-sex marriage [JURIST news archive]. The bill gives same-sex couples the same rights as heterosexual married couples, but stops short of allowing same-sex couples to adopt. The bill was supported [Diario de Noticias report, in Portuguese] by the ruling Socialist Part and other leftist parties and faced strong oppositions from conservatives as well as the Catholic Church. The bill will now be reviewed in committee before undergoing a final parliamentary vote. It will then go before President Anibal Cavaco Silva to be signed.

In August, the Portuguese Constitutional Tribunal [official website, in Portuguese] ruled [JURIST report] that same-sex marriage is not a right guaranteed by the Portuguese Constitution [text], denying an appeal by a lesbian couple claiming sexual orientation discrimination. In October 2008, parliament voted overwhelmingly against [JURIST report] two opposition proposals to legalize same-sex marriage. If the bill is given final approval, Portugal would become the sixth European country to recognize same-sex marriage, joining Belgium, the Netherlands, Spain, Norway, and Sweden [JURIST reports].



 

About Paper Chase

Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

© Copyright JURIST Legal News and Research Services, Inc., 2013.