• Civil partnership ceremonies will be able to once again take place in Queensland, as early as April. (AAP)
Changes to Queensland law will allow same-sex couples to take part in civil partnership ceremonies from April 2, the government has announced.
Source:
AAP
18 Mar 2016 - 5:54 PM 

Same-sex couples in Queensland will once again be allowed to take part in civil partnership ceremonies from April.

One of the last pieces of legislation passed by the Bligh government prior to its 2012 electoral wipeout allowed civil union ceremonies to mimic marriage.

But the Newman government rushed through legal changes to remove civil partnership ceremonies within three months of taking power in March 2012.

Instead, couples could only register their relationships with Births, Deaths and Marriages, which prompted outrage from gay rights groups.

The Department of Justice and Attorney-General on Friday announced an amendment passed by the Palaszczuk government last year would allow the ceremonies to recommence from as early as April 2.

"The latest moves restore the right of couples, regardless of gender, to celebrate their relationship with a civil partnership ceremony," a spokesman said in a statement.

Couples would need to provide notice of intention to enter a civil partnership at least 10 full days prior to the ceremony, the department said.

They would be able to do that from March 22.

"Additionally, from March 22 people can apply to be registered as a civil partnership notary to conduct these ceremonies."

Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays national spokeswoman Shelley Argent said it was great civil partnership ceremonies would again be taking place within weeks.

"I think the Palaszczuk government is just amazing with the work they have been doing to restore the rights of the LGBT community," she told AAP.

"They are also looking at adoption, they are looking at expunging homosexuality as a crime and they've introduced the Safe Schools Coalition into Queensland." In January, the government asked the Queensland Law Reform Commission to investigate how historical convictions could be erased, and a report is due by August 31.

Consensual homosexual acts have only been legal in Queensland since 1991.