Clause 170 - Grounds on which civil partnership is voidable

Part of Civil Partnership Bill [Lords] – in a Public Bill Committee at 1:15 am on 26th October 2004.

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Photo of Anne McGuire Anne McGuire Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Constitutional Affairs) (Scotland) 1:15 am, 26th October 2004

I advise the hon. Gentleman that the Law Reform Advisory Committee for Northern Ireland is looking into marriage law in Northern Ireland.

I also suggest to him that he should not put words into my mouth. I put on record that the situation in England and Wales would be questionable. The hon. Gentleman, in response to the hon. Member for Buckingham, obviously did not appreciate that. My opinion, which got some consideration in Committee, is that that is where we will start. The underlying principle of the Bill is, as the Government have suggested all along, that we will treat civil partnerships equally except where there is a justification not to do so. In this case, we think that there is a justification not to do so.

Question put, That the amendment be made:—

The Committee divided: Ayes 1, Noes 15.