An author slated for publication in the upcoming February issue of Tulane Law Review recently wrote an opinion piece for the Huffington Post on the expansion of marriage equality for same-sex couples as well as the proliferation in European countries of marriage alternatives. Erez Aloni, a fellow for the Center for Reproductive Rights of Columbia Law School, wrote in the Huffington Post about the impending legalization of same-sex marriages in Scotland and France. The op-ed builds upon Aloni’s discussion in his forthcoming article Registering Relationships, in which he explores the viability of a state-recognized alternative to marriage: the “registered relationship.”
In the Huffington Post, Aloni observed that Scotland has legalized civil partnerships only for same-sex couples while France has legalized this alternative association for same-sex and heterosexual couples alike. Aloni opines that, should Scotland choose to mimic France, its expansion of recognized associations “could be the perfect solution for people in a trial cohabitation period, for the elderly who prefer to avoid a new marriage, and for those who want to eschew matrimony for whatever reason.”
This is a theme in Aloni’s upcoming Tulane Law Review article. In Registering Relationships, Aloni suggests that “registered partners”--couples who choose to sign and “deposit with the state registrar a contract defining the partners’ obligations and rights”--could be an alternative to marriage, “allow[ing] people to design the terms of their relationships, rather than imposing the one-size-fits-all structure of marriage.”
As the New York Times further explained in article on the topic, the idea of alternative marriage contracts have gained more and more attention recently. As the article notes, last year, Mexico City proposed a short-tern, renewable marriage contract to combat high divorce rates.