Congratulations to Ting Tse-yen and Leong Chin-fai!
The couple have officially gotten married under the law in Taiwan. At first, you may think this is no big deal. After all, gay marriage has been legal in Taiwan since 2019. But, this couple lived in a gap within the system and law. Leong, 33, is originally from the country of Macau. While Taiwan recognizes gay marriage, it does not do that when one partner is from a country that does not recognize marriage equality. Since Macau does not recognize marriage equality, Ting, 29, and Leong took the case to court.
In May, we reported that Ting and Leong won the case. The Taipei High Administrative Court revoked the government decision to reject the couple’s marriage registration. Unfortunately, however, that court decision only affected Ting and Leon. The precedent will not apply to other international couples looking to be recognized in Taiwan.
“Today’s ruling is not the end, it’s a process and a small milestone,” Leong told AFP at the time. “We hope in the future all international same-sex couples can register their marriages directly rather than having to go to courts.”
While running a group to support international same-sex couples having similar issues, Ting and Leong recently celebrated their official marriage. Ting and Leong completed their marriage registration in Taipei’s Zhongzheng District Household Registration Office on Friday, August 13.
“This is an initial success,” Ting said to Barrons. “Other international couples still can’t marry and we call for full recognition.”
“We hope our registration today will let the government see that marriage equality has yet to be realized,” Leong echoed.
But will the government make these needed changes? Unfortunately, it’s unlikely. According to the Diplomat, President Tsai Ing-wen and her Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) suffered several electoral losses to their conservative opponents within the Kuomintang Party (KMT) after legalizing marriage equality. Due to this, it’s unlikely that the DPP will fight for more gay marriage-based laws in fear of political fallout.
Despite that, Ting and Leong allowed themselves a brief moment of celebration.
“We’ve waited for two years and finally we can get married,” Ting said.