Federal Register of Legislation - Australian Government

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A Bill for an Act to amend the Marriage Act 1961 to reduce government intervention in marriage, and for related purposes
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Registered 15 Sep 2016
Introduced Senate 13 Sep 2016
Table of contents.

2016

 

The Parliament of the

Commonwealth of Australia

 

THE SENATE

 

 

 

 

Presented and read a first time

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Freedom to Marry Bill 2016

 

No.      , 2016

 

(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................................................................................................ 2

4............ Schedules............................................................................................ 2

Schedule 1—Amendments                                                                                                4

Marriage Act 1961                                                                                                      4

Schedule 2—Consequential amendments                                                                7

Part 1—Amendment of the Sex Discrimination Act 1984                        7

Sex Discrimination Act 1984                                                                                     7

Part 2—Other consequential amendments                                                         8

 

 


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 is the Freedom to Marry Act 2016.

2  Commencement

             (1)  Each provision of this Act specified in column 1 of the table commences, or is taken to have commenced, in accordance with column 2 of the table. Any other statement in column 2 has effect according to its terms.

 

Commencement information

Column 1

Column 2

Column 3

Provisions

Commencement

Date/Details

1.  Sections 1 to 3 and anything in this Act not elsewhere covered by this table

The day after this Act receives the Royal Assent.

 

2.  Schedule 1

The 14th day after this Act receives the Royal Assent.

 

3.  Schedule 2, Part 1

The 14th day after this Act receives the Royal Assent.

 

4.  Schedule 2, Part 2

The day after this Act receives the Royal Assent.

 

Note:          This table relates only to the provisions of this Act as originally enacted. It will not be amended to deal with any later amendments of this Act.

             (2)  Any information in column 3 of the table is not part of this Act. Information may be inserted in this column, or information in it may be edited, in any published version of this Act.

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  Schedules

                   Legislation 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 1Amendments

  

Marriage 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 unless section 100 of this Act applies.

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,”.

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  Subsection 72(2)

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

11  Section 88EA

Repeal the section.

12  Part VIII (heading)

Repeal the heading, substitute:

Part VIIIApplication and transitional provisions

Division 1Commencement of this Act

13  At the end of Part VIII

Add:

Division 2Amendment of the definition of marriage

110  Application of amendments relating to the definition of marriage

             (1)  The amendments of this Act made by Schedule 1 to the Freedom to Marry Act 2016 apply in relation to marriages that take place at or after the commencement of that Schedule.

             (2)  The marriage definition amendments apply after that commencement, in relation to marriages that took place before that commencement, for the purposes of the following provisions:

                     (a)  Division 3 of Part IV (marriages by foreign diplomatic or consular officers);

                     (b)  Part VA (recognition of foreign marriages);

                     (c)  this subsection;

                     (d)  any other provision of this Act, in so far as the provision applies in relation to a marriage that is recognised as valid because of paragraph (a) or (b) of this subsection.

             (3)  The marriage definition amendments are the amendments of the following provisions of this Act made by Schedule 1 to the Marriage Legislation Amendment Act 2015:

                     (a)  the definition of marriage in subsection 5(1);

                     (b)  paragraph 23(2)(b);

                     (c)  paragraph 23B(2)(b).

14  Part III of the Schedule (table item 1)

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

Schedule 2Consequential amendments

Part 1Amendment of the Sex Discrimination Act 1984

Sex Discrimination Act 1984

1  After section 38

Insert:

38A  Marriage

                   Nothing in Division 1 or 2 renders it unlawful for a person to discriminate against another person on the ground of the other person’s sexual orientation, gender identity, intersex status, marital or relationship status in the course of providing, or offering to provide, goods, services or facilities in connection with the solemnisation of a marriage under the Marriage Act 1961.

2  Subsection 40(2A)

Repeal the subsection.

Part 2Other consequential amendments

3  Regulations may make consequential amendments of Acts

            The Governor‑General may, during the period of 12 months starting on the commencement of this item, make regulations amending Acts (including the Marriage Act 1961 and the Sex Discrimination Act 1984) being amendments that are of a transitional nature (including prescribing any saving or application provisions).