MobileCIT Question 11

"Should the EU propose free movement legislation requiring all Member States to recognise same-sex partners from another Member State?"

Vote on this issue: (MobileCIT question Nr. 11.)


The above question is about whether the EU should propose free movement and ordinary-procedure legislation (with Article 21(2) TFEU as the main legal basis) requiring all Member States to recognise same-sex spouses and registered partners from another Member State. (1)

‘Rainbow families’ – same-sex couples with or without children – still face many obstacles while exercising their free movement rights in the EU. (2) Some Member States fail to recognise same-sex couples (whether married, registered, or unregistered), who have come to their territory from another Member State as couples. In many cases, when crossing the border between EU Member States, the couple ceases to be legally a couple, becoming instead two unrelated individuals. Moreover, their child(ren) goes from having two legal parents to only one or no legal parent at all. (3)


Apart from the emotional significance of the continued recognition of legal relationships, it is important from a practical and legal perspective. This is the only way that persons can have legal obligations towards each other and can claim rights arising from these obligations. (4) Implementing this fundamental right throughout the EU will promote feelings of fairness, dignity, and equality among EU citizens.


As same-sex partners and their marriage are still a sensitive issue, placing these regulations on individual Member States from the EU level could be used by populists to influence local politics adversely and alienate countries from the EU.

This article is posted in collaboration with MobileCIT.