A civil union is defined as a legal relationship given to Illinois adult partners who are not married. On January 31, 2011, the Religious Freedom Protection and Civil Union Act was signed to allow both heterosexual and same-sex couples to be in a civil union with the same obligations and rights as married couples. The Civil Union Law became effective June 1, 2011.
American society is in a constant state of change – especially the field of family law. Just a decade ago, same-sex couples could only dream of getting married in most of the United States. Today, homosexual and heterosexual couples alike have the right to marry in 37 states.