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How to register a same-sex partnership

Same-sex couples can have their relationships legally recognised as ‘registered partnerships’, which confer rights and obligations to both partners and change their civil status to ‘in a registered partnership'.

Requirements

To enter into a registered partnership:

  • You must both be over 18 years of age and have the capacity to consent.
  • You must be of the same sex.
  • One or both of you must be a Swiss national or reside in Switzerland.

You are not allowed to enter into a registered partnership if

  • You are already married or in a registered partnership,
  • You are closely related to the other person.

Registered partnership application procedure

  • Apply to register your partnership at the civil register office of your or your partner’s place of residence.
  • You need to present different documents depending on your circumstances. See the information provided by your civil register office or the information sheet on registered partnerships.
  • If you want the ceremony to take place in a different register office district, once your application has been processed you can get an authorisation to register the partnership within three months at the office of your choice.

Registering your partnership

Once you have completed the application, you can register your partnership at the civil register office of your choice either straight away or within three months.

  • You must both bring your identity documents and the authorisation if the ceremony is taking place in a different register office district to the one in which your application was processed.
  • You do not need witnesses to be present.
  • The registrar will issue a deed of partnership, which you will both be asked to sign. You will then be given a registered partnership certificate. In some register offices, you may exchange vows and rings after the official ceremony.

The cost of registering a partnership is between CHF 400 and CHF 500.

Recognition

A marriage between two persons of the same sex concluded abroad is recognised in Switzerland as a civil partnership.

Addresses of Swiss civil register offices

Information sheet on registered partnership