Gay Marriage Authorized Nationwide in Brazil


Brazil's top judicial panel has authorized notaries to begin approving same-sex marriages nationwide, AFP reports:

The National Council of Justice, which oversees the Brazilian judicial system and is headed by the chief justice of the Supreme Court, said government offices that issue marriage licenses had no standing to reject gay couples.

The Supreme Court "affirmed that the expression of homosexuality and homosexual affection cannot serve as a basis for discriminatory treatment, which has no support in the Constitution," said Chief Justice Joaquim Barbosa on the council's website, referring to a 2011 ruling by the top court.

Barbosa also said there was no reason for the government's marriage licensing offices to wait for the Brazilian Congress to pass a law authorising same-sex marriage.

For those of you who read Portuguese or want to use a translator, here's the main article from Brazil's G1 Globo.

The decision by the NCJ can be appealed to the Supreme Court.

Several Brazilian states had already legalized same-sex marriage – Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, Paraná, Mato Grosso do Sul, Espírito Santo, Bahia, Alagoas, Sergipe, Piauí, Ceará. and The Federal District, but this ruling appears to extend legal authorization to all the other states.


  1. George F says

    WHAT????!!!! That’s like 200 million people added to the number of humans with access to Marriage Equality!!!! If this is upheld… it is a huge deal on this continent!

  2. Max says

    Absolutely wonderful if it is true.

    However I get a bit bored of the vagueness of Latin American and Asian judges. Whenever they make a ruling it’s never really that clear what it means.

    Couldn’t they have just said “Equal marriage is now legal everywhere, the government doesn’t need to legislate if it doesn’t want to. It’s done.”?

    The Colombian situation is case-in-point.

  3. Francis #1 says

    Big news! Brazil would be the largest country with full marriage equality! And what an strong reasoning given by Chief Justice Barbosa on why this decision was made. The decision can be appealed though.

    This would be a huge win for us. We’re picking off states, countries one by one. This global revolution cannot be stopped.

  4. MDS says

    Hey, Diana. Sorry for my English (I’m a Spanish-speaker from Argentina).

    This resolution comes into force on exactly the same moment that is published on the “Electronic Judicial Journal” (I don’t know how to say it correctly in English, which may happen tomorrow (May 15th) or the day after tomorrow (May 16th). But you can be happy: we’re 100% sure it will be published before this week ends!!

  5. Gaiboi says

    This is fascinating news! I guess Brian Brown better get busy, he’s got a lot of meetings to set up to get the right-wing nut jobs rallying to prevent this travesty!

    Congrats Brazil!

  6. Klien says

    My heart goes out to all the same sex couples in small towns across the U.S made to feel like second class citizens while they are taxed by the very state that benefits from their hard work, but penalizes them for who they love.

    ENOUGH IS ENOUGH! Marriage equality for all LGBT in the U.S! Anything less is discrimination

  7. Hugh says

    You hear that U.S Supreme court? that’s the sound of every western nation advancing us on equality and human rights. When will our supreme court get that gay Americans deserve equal protection?

  8. Leonardo says

    Every American LGBT should be demanding to be treated as every other citizens equal. It’s both amazing and outrageous so many countries are ahead of the U.S in terms of LGBT equality.

    And congrats to the beautiful Brazil for grasping what freedom truly stands for.

  9. mousemess says

    I read a comment by Towleroad that Brazil would be become the world’s largest marriage equality country, That distinction belongs to only Canada. Brazil is the world’s largest civil unions country that has now become the world’s 2nd largest marriage equality country.

  10. Patrick says

    Mousemess, it depends on how you define “large.” In terms of population, Brazil’s 199 million inhabits easily dwarfs the 34 million estimated Canadians.

  11. Izzy says

    It doesn’t really matter which country is the largest, does it? Everyone is fighting for the same objective: equal rights to everyone and that should happen everywhere. In the largest and the smallest countries.
    Congratulations to Brazil and mainly to Joaquim Barbosa who had the guts to do what should’ve been done ages ago.
    What we are witnessing is historical!

  12. Geo says

    I’m shocked. I thought the Catholic church has poisoned to many minds in the latin countries. What a stark contrast to the barbaric Russian Nazis and their gay pograms.

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