The Victorian Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages will appeal a Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) decision to allow an interstate couple to register their same-sex relationship in Victoria.

Last week Southern Star reported on a case heard last December where VCAT member Don O’Halloran ruled an interstate couple, currently living in Paris, could register their relationship in Victoria because they “intended” to live in the state.
Nicolas Taylor and his partner Lee Wallace took their case to VCAT after they were refused registration by the Victorian Registry last September because they were not living in Victoria.

According to the Victorian Relationships Act 2008, both people in a couple must be “domiciled” or ordinary residents of Victoria to be eligible to be registered.

In his decision, O’Halloran said the pair proved they had sufficient intention of making Victoria their future long-term home.

The pair own a house in Prahran and gave evidence they had always wanted to live in Melbourne, however, had been prevented from doing so because of their respective careers.

When Southern Star contacted the Victorian Registry, media spokesman Roberto Venturini confirmed the VCAT decision would be appealed in the Supreme Court. He said registrar Helen Trihas was unable to comment on the matter because the case was still before the courts.

Venturini could not comment on whether the Registry would conduct an overall review of registration rules.
“The registrar has not received another application where the applicants’ circumstances matched that of the facts presented in this particular case,” he said.

“Therefore the VCAT decision is not applicable to any other decision previously made.

“It is likely that facts will differ from one application to another and the registrar will continue to assess each application individually and with reference to the provisions of the Relationships Act.”

The hearing is expected in the coming months.

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