New Brunswick: Government Extends Benefits to Same-sex Couples

Posted Nov 26, 2008 by Bob Ewing
The government of New Brunswick has finally extended benefits and obligations to same-sex common-law couples; nine years after Supreme Court ruling.
New Brunswick
New Brunswick
It was nearly ten years ago when the Supreme Court of Canada ruled but, the New Brunswick government is finally extending benefits and obligations to same-sex common-law couples.
NB Attorney General T.J. Burke will introduce the modernization of benefits and obligations to adhere to the 1999 Supreme Court of Canada decision in M. vs. H.
The omnibus bill will overhaul more than 30 acts and regulations.
All six public pension acts are among the acts that are being rolled into this new legislation which means all common-law partners can receive pension benefits, including survivor benefits.
Same-sex couples can now have property rights and support when a common-law relationship ends.
"In 1999 the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that same-sex common-law couples should enjoy the same rights and privileges as those that are married. For several years the previous government did nothing to move on that legislation," Burke said.
The province had previously approved changes that would give same-sex couples the right to adopt.
The act will add gender-neutral language in references to common-law partnerships and marital relationships.