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Where Can Gays Legally Marry?

Here's a list of Countries and States


Lesbian couple smile at each other during wedding ceremony
Rob Melnychuk/Digital Vision/Getty Images

There are many places in the world where gays and lesbians can get married or obtain civil unions. Here are a list of places where same-sex couples can get legally married or enter in some kind of legally recognized partnership. This list will be updated as things change.

Gay Marriage


  • It is now legal for gays and lesbians to marry every place in Canada. There is no residency requirement for Canadian marriage, but that does not mean a Canadian gay marriage will be recognized by other countries.
    How to Get Married in Canada



  • Sweden became the seventh country to legalize same-sex marriage on April 1, 2009. Marriage licenses for same-sex couples became available beginning May 1, 2009. Couples who are currently in civil partnership can chose to keep that status or have it amended to marriage.


  • Norway became the sixth country to legalize same-sex marriage on May 11, 2008.
  • Denmark legalized same-sex marriage in 2012.

  • Netherlands (Holland) has full marriage and registered partnership rights for same sex or opposite sex couples.


  • Belgium in 2003 became the second country in the world to allow gay and lesbian couples to marry. Since 2006, gay and lesbian couples have been allowed to adopt children.


  • Spain voted in June 2005 to extend full marriage rights to gay and lesbian citizens. The measure adds one sentence to existing Spanish marriage law: Marriage will have the same requirements and results when the two people entering into the contract are of the same sex or of different sexes.
  • Portugal became the sixth European country to allow same-sex marriage with a law passed by parliament in January 2010 and signed by the president in May. Although same-sex marriage is now legal in Portugal, same-sex couples are not allowed to adopt children.
  • Iceland began to allow same-sex marriage in June 2010.
  • France legalized same-sex marriage in 2013.
  • England and Wales allows same-sex marriage as of March 29, 2014.

New Zealand

  • New Zealand legalized same-sex marriage in 2013.


  • South Africa legalized gay marriage on November 30th, 2006. South Africa has one of the most inclusive constitutions in the world, calling for equal rights for gays and lesbians.

The United States

In the United States gays and lesbians can legally marry in  

Central/South America

  • Mexico City, Mexico allows same-sex couples all the rights and responsibilities of marriage since March 2010, including the right to adopt children. By law, marriages entered into in Mexico City must be recognized elsewhere in the nation.
  • Argentina legalized same-sex marriage in July 2010.
  • Brazil. Same-sex marriage is legal is some parts of Brazil, but not in others.
  • Uruguay legalized same-sex marriage in August 2013.


Where can gays and lesbians get civil unions or domestic partnerships?

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