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blog home Civil Unions Solidarity Leads Heterosexual Couples to Choose Civil Unions over Marriage in Illinois

Solidarity Leads Heterosexual Couples to Choose Civil Unions over Marriage in Illinois

By Nottage and Ward on December 29, 2011

The first six months after the passing of the civil union law in Illinois resulted in the issuance of 1,856 civil union licenses in Cook County. Just over 3,700 civil union licenses were issued across the state for couples throughout 90 of the state’s 102 counties According to the Chicago Sun-Times, 138 of Cook County licenses were issued to heterosexual couples, which presents an important question: Why would heterosexual couples choose to enter into a civil union instead of a marriage?

A recent report from the Cook County Clerk reveals the answer, according to The Huffington Post. The report, which was released on December 20, found solidarity with same-sex couples as the number one reason why opposite-sex couples opted for a civil union instead of a traditional marriage. A survey conducted by the clerk’s office revealed that 87 heterosexual couples registered for civil unions in Cook County during the survey period of June 1 through September 19. Twenty-six percent of those who took the survey stated that their decision was based on “political or ideological reasons such as equality and inclusiveness.” Additional reasons included obtaining benefits and personal or religious convictions.

The Director of Public Policy at Equality Illinois, an LGBT advocacy group based in Chicago, is optimistic about how far the gay community has come, hoping that these statistics are a trend throughout the nation. He goes further to express Equality Illinois’ appreciation of heterosexual couples who forgo marriage rights nationwide to support the gay community.

If you are considering entering into a civil union in Illinois, the dedicated Chicago civil union lawyers at Nottage and Ward can help you and your partner understand your legal rights and options as they pertain to the new law. Call us today for a consultation at (312) 332-2915.

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