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Same Sex Marriages (Civil Unions)

How does being in a same sex relationship in South Africa affect you?

South Africa was the first country on the African continent to recognise the rights of same sex couples. As one of the fundamental rights of our Constitution, equality is guaranteed, and therefore one has equal protection before the law. Before 2006, same sex marriages in South Africa were not recognised. However, on the 30th November 2006, the Civil Union Act was promulgated, allowing same sex couples to legally marry. This alteration in the marriage status of same sex unions was influenced by a landmark Constitutional Court case in 2005, namely - Minister of Home Affairs v Fourie, which extended the definition of marriage to include same sex spouses. A civil union can be seen as a voluntary union of two persons who are both 18 years or older, solemnised or registered by way of either a marriage or civil partnership in accordance with the procedures prescribed in the Act, to the exclusion while it lasts, of all others.

How does one go about registering a same-sex marriage?

Contact our fiduciary department - headed by Cassie Sharrock, who is supported by an efficient team of experienced paralegals. Our professionals will advise you of all the options available and the legal consequences of a marriage. All marriages in South Africa are seen as being “in community of property”, unless a valid antenuptial contract has been entered into before the marriage is solemnised.