Parliament has voted to legalise same-sex marriage in Australia, but gay couples won’t be able to walk down the aisle for another few weeks.
The law will not take effect immediately, with the governor-general needing to sign the bill to give it Royal Assent.
Same-sex marriage will be legalised 28 days after the day it is signed, unless the government sets a specific date for it to become law beforehand.
For Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s promise that same-sex marriage would be legalised by Christmas, such a date would need to be set.
But it’s not looking likely that Governor-General Peter Cosgrove will sign the bill immediately.
A spokesperson told that Cosgrove will be in Canberra “over the next fortnight” and will sign the bill once it is printed and sent to him.
Regardless of the Governor-General’s signature, there will be no same-sex marriages before Christmas.
Couples need to give one month’s notice to the federal government in order to wed.
“The Australian Government is progressing arrangements for marriage equality to commence quickly,” a statement on the Attorney-General’s website reads.
So at this stage, the first same-sex weddings cannot be held until the second week of January at the earliest.


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