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Jo Summers, Solicitor and Jenny Chase Trainee, Howard Kennedy. The formal recognition of civil partnerships has been possible since the Civil Partnership Act 2004 (the Act) came into force on 5 December 2005. The aim of the Act was to give a registered civil partnership the same legal effect as marriage. However, partners who have married legally overseas will not be treated in the UK as being married. In the recent case brought by Ms Kitzinger and Ms Wilkinson, who married in Vancouver in 2003, the court held that there was an insurmountable hurdle in trying to have a same-sex marriage recognised in English law, see Wilkinson v Kitzinger and Her Majestys Attorney-General (The Lord Chancellor Intervening)  EWHC 835 (Fam),  2 FLR 397. This article reviews the benefits and a few possible disadvantages to registering a civil partnership. See December  Fam Law for the full article.
The Red Book is the acknowledged authority on practice and procedure