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David Hodson on International Family Law: Irish cohabitation reforms

Date:6 SEP 2010

David Hodson

Leading Irish family lawyer Jennifer O'Brien of Mason Hayes+Curran (www.mhc.ie) has helpfully prepared a briefing paper on the changes in the Republic of Ireland in the Civil Partnership and Certain Rights and Obligations of Cohabitants Act 2010 expected to come into force early 2011. It is regarded as of tremendous social significance to enhance rights and protections for thousands of Irish men and women.

Civil partnership was a curiously typical English compromise eschewing treating same-sex unions as marriage yet giving similar rights. As the more strident members of the same sex community continue to demand same-sex marriage yet many look at the declining take up of civil partnership and the increasing rate of dissolution termination of civil partnerships it is instructive that Ireland has followed the civil partnership route. Social change cannot go too fast imposing on those who have genuine anxieties and concerns. The time is not yet right for same-sex marriage. The UK...

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