Several states and municipalities have adopted a system whereby unmarried cohabitants (heterosexual or homosexual) may register as “domestic partners.” Other states and municipalities permit domestic partners to recover benefits. These classifications provide some rights that are analogous to marital rights, though these rights are certainly limited. The greatest benefit in registering as domestic partners is that each partner enjoys insurance coverage, family leave, and retirement benefits similar to married couples, though these rights are considerably more restricted than rights afforded to married couples. However, these rights are not generally recognized outside the jurisdiction that permits registration of domestic partners.
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