Mon, Jun 24, 2019 - Page 2 News List

Same-sex marriages top 1,000 in month

Staff writer, with CNA

A total of 1,173 same-sex couples have registered their marriages, while two have gotten divorced since the nation on May 24 became the first in Asia to legalize same-sex marriage, government statistics released yesterday showed.

One month after the Enforcement Act of Judicial Yuan Constitutional Interpretation No. 748 (司法院釋字第748號解釋施行法) went into effect, Ministry of the Interior statistics showed that among the 1,173 same-sex marriages registered so far, 790 have been between women and 383 between men.

The records also showed that 28 transnational marriages were registered, all of which were between a Taiwanese and a foreign national.

None of the couples have so far filed to adopt their partner’s biological children, while two of the couples have since obtained divorces.

Under the act, which was passed on May 17 and took effect on May 24, two people aged 18 or older of the same sex are allowed to register for marriage.

They are entitled to the same rights as heterosexual couples in the areas of inheritance and medical power of attorney. One partner may adopt the biological children of the other, but cannot adopt non-biological children who had previously been adopted by one of the two.

On the day the bill took effect, 526 couples registered marriages, ministry data showed.

Most of the couples live in New Taipei City (242), followed by Taipei (198), Kaohsiung (159), Taichung (141) and Taoyuan (123), the data showed.

The number of same-sex marriages recorded so far in five of the nation’s 22 cities and counties has been fewer than 10, while none have been registered in Lienchiang County.

Over the past month, 9,644 marriages between people of different sexes have been registered, averaging 321 per day, compared with 39 same-sex marriages per day, the statistics showed.

In related news, the ministry’s statistics showed that 54,402 couples got divorced last year, down 37 from the previous year.

On average, there were 149.05 divorces per day, compared with 149.15 in 2017 and 156.78 in 2009, the statistics showed.

The number of divorces has fluctuated over the past 10 years, rising from 57,223 in 2009 to 58,037 in 2010, then falling to 53,144 in 2014 and increasing to 54,439 in 2017, the ministry said.

Last year’s figure was 3,635 lower than in 2010, it said.

The median duration of a marriage last year was 8.25 years, down 0.27 years from 2017 and down 0.46 years from 2009, the data showed.

Among couples who got divorced, 34.3 percent had been married for fewer than five years and 21.7 percent were married for five to nine years, indicating that the divorce rate was lower among couples who had been married for more than five years, the ministry said.

Last year, 80.93 percent of couples who got divorced were both Taiwanese, while 19.07 percent were a Taiwanese and a foreign national, the statistics showed.

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