The world of a UK Civil Partnership can be confusing, and there are often many questions that a couple will ask. This article provides answers to the most frequently asked question by couples entering a UK Civil Partnership.
What are the benefits of entering into a UK Civil Partnership?
On the 5th of December 2005, the Civil Partnership Act (2004) came into force, and for the very first time same-sex couples from across the UK were able to obtain legal recognition for their relationship.
Couples forming a UK Civil Partnership are granted a new legal status, that of a 'civil partner', and the union also brings with it a whole host of other plusses. As well as the obvious number one benefit of entering into a Civil Partnership (that couples get to demonstrate to the world and each other how much they love their partner!), civil partners receive the same rights as married couples in a whole host of legal matters. In fact, as a direct result of the 2004 Civil Partnership Act, couples entering into a UK Civil Partnership...
Can receive both tax credits and child support
Are recognised for immigration and nationality purposes
Have the ability to apply for parental responsibility for their civil partner's child or children
Receive recognition under intestacy rules
Are granted access to fatal accident compensation
Receive protection from domestic violence
Have a duty to provide reasonable maintenance for their civil partner & any children
Receive various tax breaks as well as employment & pension benefits
Can inherit tenancy agreements
Love should be the main reason to enter into a UK Civil Partnership, but it is always nice when there are added benefits to doing so!
Which finger do I place the Wedding Ring On?
It is entirely up to each couple which finger to choose. The most common options here in the UK are the fourth finger on the right hand (the one next to the little finger) or the fourth finger on the left hand (traditionally referred to as the ‘ring finger’).
The ring finger is the one used by heterosexual couples when they wed, and some gay couples choose this as a demonstration that they are on equal terms or as a way of demonstrating to everyone that they are married.
Many other fingers and even thumbs have been, and will continue to be, used so it really is your choice – there isn’t a right or a wrong answer. To demonstrate a stong union with one another, regardless of which finger or thumb is chosen, it is best to ensure that both partners wear the ring on the same one.
Does either partner need to Change Their Name?
Put simply, no. That said, a great number of couples will choose to share a surname to further demonstrate their union to each other and to friends, relatives and colleagues.
Couples entering into a UK Civil Partnership can choose to retain the surnames they have, to have one partner adopt the other partners surname, or most commonly, to opt for a double-barrel surname with both original names joined by a hyphen (‘Lewis-Cooper’ for example) – although which surname goes first is for you to argue amongst yourselves!
Any change of surname, or change of title for that matter (i.e. from Miss/Ms to Mrs) can be done by Deed Poll via the Civil Partnership Certificate that is issued after the ceremony. It is quite a simple procedure and your Registrar will be able to advise what forms need to be completed if you wish to go down this route.
For those of you wanting to find out more, we've a whole host of other wedding ceremony articles on our site packed full of expert information and helpful advice, not to mention our online wedding directory that's filled with loads of civil wedding venues, decorations, florists and more.