A brand new law allowed people in same-sex relationships to become legally married on the Isle of Man in 2016.

Chief Minister Allan Bell CBE MHK welcomed the new law and described it as a “historic moment” for the island, which is just off the coast of England.

The Act enables same-sex couples to marry either in a civil ceremony, in a registry office or approved premises, or in religious premises (except those of the Church of England) subject to the agreement of the religious organisation in question.

Mr Bell commented,

“Recognition of marriage for same-sex couples in Manx law is a truly historic moment, showing just how far the Island has travelled over the past 30 years. It sends out a clear message that the Isle of Man today is a modern, open and inclusive society where equal rights are respected. I believe that the values of fairness and tolerance reflected in this legislation are shared by the overwhelming majority of our population.”

Gay marriage becomes legal in Isle of Man
Photo by Wallace Araujo on Pexels.com

The first in the UK to allow heterosexual couples to get civilly partnered

The legislation also makes the Isle of Man the first place in the British Isles to allow opposite-sex couples to enter into civil partnerships as an alternative to marriage. Civil partnerships have been available to same-sex couples in the Isle of Man since 2011.

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The Marriage and Civil Partnership Amendment Act took effect from July 22 under an appointed day order made after Royal Assent was announced in Tynwald.