Domestic Partnerships vs. Marriage
For some, there is a huge difference between domestic partnerships and marriages. First, couples in a domestic partnership, are unable to enjoy the designation of marriage. Many couples argue that the term marriage is the difference between enjoying equal rights or experiencing discrimination.
In addition, individuals in domestic partnerships enjoy fewer rights in regards to their relationship. For some, the difference between domestic partnerships and marriage, can be the rights they enjoy, such as the ability to adopt children or use the services of a surrogate mother. In many cases, domestic partners have no legal ability to start a family.
Domestic partnerships often entitle same sex couples to many of the benefits of marriage. However, there is a big difference between domestic partnerships and marriage. In fact, many members of the LGBT community argue that a domestic partnership is not an acceptable designation of their relationship.
Members of the LGBT community argue that their inability to enter into marriage, perpetuates the discrimination that they already experience on a frequent basis. In addition, domestic partners may not be able to have joint health insurance, joint bank accounts or shared property. In essence, their relationship is only partially, legally recognized.
The difference between a domestic partnership and marriage, can determine a couples eligibility to adopt children of use the services of a surrogate mother. In fact, many same sex couples adopt their child from another country because of more liberal laws. In addition, many domestic partners use the services of an international surrogate.
Many states forbid same sex couples from starting families, by the wording of their laws. For example, a state’s laws may explain that only married couples may a adopt a child. While that law excludes singles from adopting, it also prevents domestic partners from adopting. If however, same sex couples were able to get married, they may be able to adopt a child locally or utilize the services of a surrogate mother in their state.
The difference between a domestic partnership and marriage can be small or it can have large implications for a same sex couple. Besides having the designation of marriage, same sex couples may also be forbidden from starting a family. Domestic partnerships may also prevent same sex couples form being able to share health benefits or make medical decisions for their partner. While married couples’ property automatically becomes shared property, domestic partners property may not.
This can cause complications in the event that on partner passes away. However, many domestic partners are able to share leases and other real estate contracts, so that a surviving partner will be able to continue to reside at the property. As laws slowly change, the need for equality becomes more and more clear. The difference between a domestic partnership and a marriage, can mean everything to a same sex couple.