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Worldwide LGBTQIA+ Same-Sex Unions & Marriages

A guide to the countries in the world that recognise same-sex unions and marriages
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29.2% of countries around the world recognise some form of same-sex civil unions, and partnerships / 23.2% of countries recognise same-sex marriages

The gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and all groups with non-traditional gender and sexual identities, collectively known as the LGBTQIA+ community, have been around in many forms for thousands of years. With attitudes continually changing towards the community, many countries began passing laws to allow same-sex couples to form unions, partnerships or marriages.

The LGBTQIA+ Same-Sex Unions & Marriages index focuses on every country worldwide. A guide to the countries that legally recognise same-sex unions and marriages by country and status of the types of unions recognised

Worldwide LGBTQIA+ Equality Index

31.3%

countries score high or very high

Worldwide LGBTQIA+ Dollar

$1.26 trillion

added to the world economy

Worldwide LGBTQIA+ Population

206.8 million

countries score high or very high

Worldwide Same-Sex Unions or Marriages

29.2%

68 countries recognise same-sex unions or marriages

Worldwide Legal Gender Recognition

41.6%

97 countries legally recognise gender identities

Worldwide Gay Conversion Therapy

6.4%

or 15 countries have laws banning Gay Conversion Therapy

Discover the status of same-sex marriages and unions in any country…
Gayther Dropdown – Same-Sex Marriages (500px)

Planning for your big day? The Gayther wedding and union checklist can be used online or via download and contains a list of all the main tasks and helpful tips

  2022 SUMMARY

Gayther Same-Sex Marriage - 2022 Statistics

KEY FACTS

  • 29.2% or 68 countries around the world allow same-sex unions or partnerships
  • 23.2% or 54 countries around the world allow same-sex marriages
  • Europe has the highest number of countries allowing same-sex unions or marriages at 64.6% or 31 countries, followed by the Americas at 43.4% or 23 countries
  • Asia has the lowest number of countries allowing same-sex marriages at 1 or 2%, followed by Africa at 7% or 4 countries

SAME-SEX MARRIAGES & UNIONS OVERVIEW

  • 16.8% or 34.7 million LGBTQIA+ individuals are living in countries where they can form civil partnerships or unions
  • 15.4% or 31.8 million LGBTQIA+ individuals are living in countries where they can form same-sex marriages
  • 29.2% or 68 countries around the world allow same-sex unions or partnerships
  • 23.2% or 54 countries around the world allow same-sex marriages
  • Comparing the number of countries against the total within a continent
    • Europe has the highest number of countries allowing same-sex unions or marriages at 64.6% or 31 countries, followed by the Americas at 43.4% or 23 countries
    • Asia has the lowest number of countries allowing same-sex unions or partnerships with 5.9% or 3 countries, followed by Africa with 7% or 4 countries
    • Europe has the highest number of countries allowing same-sex marriages at 42% or 20 countries, followed by the Americas at 40% or 21 countries
    • Asia has the lowest number of countries allowing same-sex marriages at 1 or 2%, followed by Africa at 7% or 4 countries

Developments from the previous year

  • Switzerland – On September 26, 2021 – Swiss voters approved same-sex marriage in a nationwide referendum
  • Chile – On November 30, 2021, the deputies and senate of Chile approved same-sex marriage

LGBTQIA+ COUNTRY & REGION GUIDES

With countries around the world treating members of the LGBTQIA+ community differently, planning an overseas trip can be challenging. With over 233 country and 435 regional guides, Gayther guides provide you with all the information you need when planning your trip. From LGBTQIA equality to essential travel information, discover Gayther guides today

  INTERACTIVE MAP

click here  Click on a specific country within the map to learn what types of same-sex unions and marriages that particular country legal recognises

GREEN – a country that recognises some form of same-sex marriage or civil union

TAKING PRIDE IN YOU

Acceptance and coming to terms with a part of what makes you can be challenging for many people. The Gayther pride in series is about celebrating all things relating to sexualities, gender identities and special groups. Showcasing the exceptional people, interesting facts and ways to connect with those unique communities, all designed to help and promote pride in LGBTQIA+ identities

  ABOUT LGBTQIA+ SAME-SEX UNIONS & MARRIAGES

Gayther Community - About Same-Sex Marriages
The gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and all groups with non-traditional gender and sexual identities, collectively known as the LGBTQIA+ community, have been around in many forms for thousands of years and throughout the centuries. The community faced hundreds of years of persecution, targeted campaigns and gruesome convictions when prosecuted. It was not until the late 18th century that the gay movement began to gain momentum, with prominent people advocating for equality and a movement that continues today. From emperors to actors, the community has a long and rich history. Often a tale of people facing adversity, just for accepting who they are, even when the risk to their personal safety is so high. Many within the community face a challenge every day, in every country, region, and continent worldwide.

With attitudes changing and more countries becoming more accepting and inclusive, the community has seen nations introducing laws to permit same-sex unions and marriages. Like in traditional heterosexual marriages, same-sex unions or marriages are a declaration of love or wanting to share your life with someone. Legal protection and rights are achieved by having the relationship recognised under the law.

From factors such as inheritance, tax relief to next of kin and end of life matters, same-sex official relationship status provides financial relief and added protection for both parties. People who have been together a long time will accumulate many shared assets and love and care throughout their partners’ lives. When hospitalised or in life-and-death situations, doctors will often restrict visits to family only and ask a legally recognised partner to make difficult decisions. In the absence of a legal partner, they will ask other family members, even if they have been estranged for a long time. Forming a marriage or union is a declaration of love and legal recognition of a couple’s status. Not only that but forming a marriage or union offers long term protection for both partners.

EXCEPTIONAL AND DIVERSE LGBTQIA+ COMMUNITY

Learn more about the exceptional and diverse global LGBTQIA+ community. Discover interesting facts, join in the fun with interactive games, learn more about the exceptional pioneers and advocates and take pride in all of the sexualities, gender identities and special groups. Discover all things LGBTQIA+ with Gayther today

  FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Gayther Same-Sex Marriage - Marriage Difference

What is the difference between civil partnerships and marriages?

Civil partnerships and marriages are almost identical, with a few exceptions. The marriage ceremony is rooted in religion, so when individuals marry, they will typically exchange vows, such as till death do us part. In contrast, a civil partnership is formed by signing a legal contract or a partnership agreement. The second notable difference relates to when a marriage or partnership ends. In most countries, except for countries like the Philippines, the process of dissolving a marriage is established and legal. The divorce requirements are different in each country; however, Civil Partnerships or Unions are ended through dissolution, a process for terminating the contract or agreement. Civil partners cannot describe themselves as married and form their unions at an official government building. One misconception is that civil partnerships are similar to common-law spouses. Civil partnerships and unions have greater rights and recognition under the law than common-law relationships. They have legal recognition, similar to marriage, with the few exceptions previously outlined. Civil partnerships and unions were created as a method or way to allow same-sex couples to form legally recognised relationships. They were able to create legal relationships without using the term marriage and avoid conflicts with religious beliefs relating to the sanctity of marriage. With time and advocates’ direct actions, many countries have changed their laws to allow same-sex couples to form legally binding marriages, partnerships, and unions. Even though many countries now recognise same-sex marriages, some religious groups will not perform marriage ceremonies or sanction same-sex unions

Gayther Same-Sex Marriage - Legal Recognition

Why is the legal recognition of same-sex marriages so important?

Over the centuries, more countries have created a clear separation between the government and the church. A country can be religious; however, in democratically elected nations, those appointed by the people are meant to represent everyone in society. The representation should include people who may hold different views and beliefs and live different lifestyles to their own. With greater diversity worldwide, people from various religious denominations and more acceptance of those different to ourselves, it is crucial that everyone is treated the same. Equality ensures that everyone has the same rights and protections under the law. So, allowing heterosexual couples to marry but not allowing-same sex individuals the same legal recognition creates inequality and takes away people’s fundamental rights. People’s personal beliefs are different from the law, and no one should have the power or right to take away or suppress the freedoms of another group, especially in modern-democratically elected countries

Gayther Same-Sex Marriage - Divorce

Are marriages and divorces the same for LGBTQIA+ and non-LGBTQIA+ couples?

YES – the process of marrying and divorcing are identical; the only minor exception is when same-sex couples form a civil partnership or union. The process and laws relating to marriage and divorce will vary by country. However, nations that permit same-sex marriages will follow the same process for straight and same-sex couples alike. Marriage laws relate to various things, including the management of shared assets concerning inheritance, nationality, obtaining citizenship through either spouse, tax relief, and important life matters, such as those relating to end-of-life. Ending the marriage, known as divorce, will also follow the same process as straight couples living within any given country. Divorce typically requires a reason or grounds for divorce, such as adultery, unreasonable behaviour or desertion. The requirements vary by country; however, you will need to have been married for more than one year and separated for two years or more

WHAT LANGUAGES ARE SPOKEN WHERE

It is estimated that there are over seven thousand languages and dialects spoken around the world. When travelling, it is important to find out what languages are spoken where, as well, as key phrases and terms in those languages. The Gayther Worldwide languages guide features all of the main languages spoken around the world, organised by country and region. Discover all things languages today

  USEFUL PHRASES

Common phrases and terms in over 80 languages

Please select a country from the drop-down list to discover common phrases relating to marriage and unions

Gayther Useful Phrases – Marriage (500px)
MARRIAGE
BOYFRIEND
BRIDE
CELEBRANT
CEREMONY
CHURCH
CIVIL
COHABIT
COHABITATION
COMMITMENT