Civil unions come into effect

26 April 2005

Civil Union Bill demonstration, 2004 (Alexander Turnbull Library, PADL-000090)

Couples − heterosexual or homosexual − were now able to register their relationship as a civil union.

The change meant that all couples in New Zealand, whether they were married, in a civil union or in a de facto partnership, now had equal legal rights and obligations.

Marriage between two adults of the same sex was legalised in August 2013 by the Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Act.