Gay marriage does not entitle couples to the same benefits as heterosexual marriage in most countries. Part of the reasoning behind the struggle for gay marriage to be legalized is to ensure gay couples have gay marriage rights, such as inheritance rights, property rights and next-of-kin rights in the event one partner becomes ill.
In Canada, as well as gaining rights through marriage, cohabiting same-sex couples are entitled to many of the same legal and financial benefits as married opposite-sex couples.
In the Netherlands and Belgium, gay marriage and opposite-sex marriage is equal apart from rights to children. Only biological or formally adoptive parents have parental rights, meaning that the non-biological parent of the child must formally adopt their spouse's child, even if the child was born during the marriage.
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