Federal Register of Legislation - Australian Government

Primary content

A Bill for an Act to amend the Marriage Act 1961 to reduce government intervention in marriage, and for related purposes
For authoritative information on the progress of bills and on amendments proposed to them, please see the House of Representatives Votes and Proceedings, and the Journals of the Senate as available on the Parliament House website.
Registered 28 Nov 2014
Introduced Senate 26 Nov 2014
Table of contents.

2013‑2014

 

The Parliament of the

Commonwealth of Australia

 

THE SENATE

 

 

 

 

Presented and read a first time

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Freedom to Marry Bill 2014

 

No.      , 2014

 

(Senator Leyonhjelm)

 

 

 

A Bill for an Act to amend the Marriage Act 1961 to reduce government intervention in marriage, and for related purposes

  

  


Contents

1............ Short title............................................................................................. 1

2............ Commencement................................................................................... 1

3............ Objects................................................................................................ 1

4............ Schedule(s)......................................................................................... 2

Schedule 1—Marriage Act 1961                                                                                   3

 

 


A Bill for an Act to amend the Marriage Act 1961 to reduce government intervention in marriage, and for related purposes

The Parliament of Australia enacts:

1  Short title

                   This Act may be cited as the Freedom to Marry Act 2014.

2  Commencement

                   This Act commences on the day after this Act receives the Royal Assent.

3  Objects

                   The objects of this Act are:

                     (a)  to ensure the Marriage Act 1961 allows all Australians the freedom to marry regardless of sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity; and

                     (b)  to facilitate less government intervention in private and family life; and

                     (c)  to promote freedom of choice and conscience for individual Australians.

4  Schedule(s)

                   Each Act that is specified in a Schedule to this Act is amended or repealed as set out in the applicable items in the Schedule concerned, and any other item in a Schedule to this Act has effect according to its terms.

Schedule 1Marriage Act 1961

  

1  Subsection 5(1) (definition of marriage)

Repeal the definition, substitute:

marriage means the union of 2 people, to the exclusion of all others, voluntarily entered into for life.

2  Paragraphs 23(2)(b) and 23B(2)(b)

Omit “a brother and a sister”, substitute “siblings”.

3  At the end of section 39

Add:

             (4)  A person who is authorised by subsection (1) or under subsection (2) to solemnise marriages must not refuse to solemnise a marriage in accordance with this Act for any reason other than that the marriage would not be a lawful marriage.

4  Subsection 45(2)

After “or husband”, insert “, or partner, or spouse”.

5  Subsection 46(1)

Omit “a man and a woman”, substitute “2 people”.

6  Section 47 (heading)

Repeal the heading, substitute:

47  Authorised celebrants (other than certain State and Territory officers) not bound to solemnise marriage etc.

7  Section 47

Omit “Nothing”, substitute “Subject to subsection 39(4), nothing”.

8  Paragraph 47(a)

Omit “, being a minister of religion,”.

9  Application of amendments—ministers of religion

To avoid doubt, the amendments made by this Schedule do not require ministers of religion to solemnise marriages.

10  At the end of section 71

Add:

             (3)  If a chaplain refuses to solemnise a marriage because the marriage is not the marriage of a man and a woman, the chaplain must, if possible, substitute another chaplain who is willing to solemnise the marriage.

11  Subsection 72(2)

After “or husband”, insert “, or partner, or spouse”.

12  Section 88EA

Repeal the section.

13  Part III of the Schedule (table item 1)

Omit “a husband and wife”, substitute “2 people”.

14  Regulations may make consequential amendments of Acts

(1)       The Governor‑General may make regulations amending Acts (other than the Marriage Act 1961) being amendments that are consequential on, or that otherwise relate to, the enactment of this Act.

(2)       For the purposes of the Acts Publication Act 1905, amendments made by regulations for the purposes of this item are to be treated as if they had been made by an Act.

Note:       Subitem (2) ensures that amendments can be incorporated into reprints of Acts.