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Australian capital region passes same-sex partners registration law

[JURIST] The Legislative Assembly [official website] of the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) [official website] passed a law Friday that will enable same-sex domestic partners to register their relationships with the government. A part of the legislation which would have legalized same-sex civil union ceremonies was removed prior to passage [JURIST report] because the Australian federal government [official website] threatened to veto the Civil Partnerships Bill 2006 [legislative materials; PDF text] if it passed the Assembly. AP has more [news report].

The legislation will grant same-sex couples access to Commonwealth pensions, tax and social security benefits. The Civil Partnerships Bill was introduced after an earlier civil unions law [legislative materials] was overturned by the federal government [JURIST report] because that law's provisions made civil unions appear unacceptably similar to marriage. Despite that action, the federal government has announced plans to change over 100 laws [JURIST report] to eliminate same-sex discrimination.

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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.

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