Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Advanced search  


Pages: [1]   Go Down

Author Topic: So... which one of you is the 'wife'?  (Read 2187 times)


  • Guru
  • *
  • Posts: 1258
So... which one of you is the 'wife'?
« on: April 11, 2007, 11:32:26 AM »

It's a burning question in South Africa...

There is such a shortage of marriage officers who are licensed to marry gay couples that couples are going out of town to tie the knot.

This is according to Glenn de Swardt, acting director of the Triangle Project, a gay advocacy group, who added that for Cape Town couples Paarl had been the venue of choice but bottlenecks there were prompting people to travel to George. "So it becomes a bit of a honeymoon as well," he said.

De Swardt said the problem wasn't with officials from the Department of Home Affairs who "had bent over backwards" to be accommodating, but rather that not all members of the clergy had applied to be marriage officers.

This part is hardly a surprise, or even news. But here comes the other part...

... one potential hitch in connection with property conveyancing has been identified by legal experts. Property law specialist Marguerite van Niekerk, of Herold Gie Attorneys, said now the Civil Unions Act was being applied in matters such as adoption, insurance, immigration, estates and conveyancing, discrepancies were arising.

This was because existing legislation assumed that married couples were heterosexual and referred to the partners as husband and wife. Van Niekerk said if a same-sex couple were to purchase or sell property together, a problem arose with respect to the official matrimonial domicile.

"The general rule in South Africa, and an internationally recognised principle, is that the matrimonial domicile is determined by the husband's domicile at the time of marriage. The problem with this, in a same-sex marriage, is who is the 'husband'?"


Other potential problems could arise with regard to surnames, said Van Niekerk. In a traditional marriage, the wife usually adopted the husband's surname or hyphenated it with her own. "A husband cannot just take on his wife's surname; an application has to be made to the director general of Home Affairs in order to do so. Again, who will be deemed to be the husband/wife in a same-sex civil union?"

Jordaan said the act was still too new to know exactly how these issues would affect couples but added that the legislation might need to be amended.

Uhhhh.... ya THINK?! Gawd, some people are just so friggin' stooopid!
"The dignity of an animal is measured by his capacity to revolt in the face of oppression." -- Mikhail Bakunin
Pages: [1]   Go Up