ARGENTINA. WORLD-WIDE PIONEER IN INDIVIDUAL RIGHTS ISSUES.
As of the enactment of Law No. 26,618 (July 21, 2010) any couple complying with the requirements set forth in the Civil Code has the right to get married, regardless of the nationality, sexual orientation or gender identity of the spouses. This means that as from the approval of this law —popularly known as the “Equal Marriage Law”— heterosexual, gay, lesbian, bisexual, transvestite, transsexual and transgender individuals may get married.
Since it is included in the Argentine Civil Code, the Marriage Law has full effect within the entire territory of the Argentine Republic, regardless of the city or province where a wedding may take place. Moreover, Argentina has subscribed reciprocity agreements with several countries over the world, in many of which the weddings celebrated in our country are deemed valid.
HOW DOES THE LAW APPLY TO TOURISTS?
Out of the nineteen countries in the world where equal marriage is legal, only in Argentina are non resident foreigners and tourists allowed to get married.
RESIDENTS AND NON-RESIDENTS
Pursuant to Section 20 of the National Constitution, “Foreigners enjoy within the territory of the Nation all the civil rights of citizens; they may (...) make wills and marry under the laws (…).” It should also be noted that Argentine legislation does not add any specific requirements nor does it establish any difference whatsoever for weddings between foreign individuals.
EVOLUTION: 2010 - 2015
It's been five years since the enactment of the Equal Marriage Law, and over 10,500 couples have married all over the country since its enactment. Ten percent (10%) of those couples have come from abroad.
ARGENTINA IN LATIN AMERICA AND THE REST OF THE WORLD
Gay marriage has been legal in the Argentine Republic since July 21, 2010. With the approval of the Equal Marriage Law, Argentina became the first Latin American country to acknowledge this civil right over the entire national territory. On an international level, Argentina was the tenth country to approve this kind on union.
The civil union bill submitted by CHA (Homosexual Community of Argentina) was passed by the Legislature of Buenos Aires on December 12, 2002. Thus, Buenos Aires became the first Latin American jurisdiction to authorize the civil union between same-sex individuals.
The first appeal for legal protection was submitted by María Rachid, the President of the Argentine Federation of Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals and Trans (FALGBT), together with her partner, Claudia Castro. The appeal was brought before the Supreme Court of Justice, which ruled in favor of Rachid’s appeal, even though the court was never requested to return a verdict when the amendment of the Civil Code was approved by Congress. On November 13, 2009, Judge Gabriela Seijas, with jurisdiction over the City of Buenos Aires, ruled that Sections 172 and 188 of the Civil Code were unconstitutional since they provided only for opposite-sex marriage, and allowed petitioners Alex Freyre and José María Di Bello to get married.