Laws

ROMANIA

Limited information only available for these topics

Access to Children
Adoption of Children
Age of Consent
Anti-Vilification
Artifical Insemination
Assisted Reproduction
Asylum / Refugees
Civil Unions
  Custody of Children
Discrimination
Fostering Children
Gender Identity
Harassment
Hate Crimes
HIV/Aids
  Homosexuality
Immigration
Inheritance
In Vitro Fertilisation (IVF)
Marriage
Military
Partners
  Parenting
Privacy
Property
Sodomy
Transgender, Transsexual
Violence
Wrongful Death

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Age of Consent Legislation/Cases/References
1.

National

The legal age of consent to sexual intercourse is said to be fifteen (15) years [R1.2].

However, the legal age of majority is eighteen (18) years [R1.2].

Having regard to the above, consensual sex between same-sex couples is lawful at eighteen (18) years and as between opposite-sex couples fifteen (15) years.


In May 1998, proposed changes to Romania's criminal code would provide equal treatment for homosexuals and heterosexuals in cases of rape and underage sex [R1.1].

Homosexual rape would be dealt with under standard rape laws, while homosexual sex with a minor (under 14) would fall under general sex-with-minors legislation.

R1.2 Interpol: Sexual offences against children PDF 22.78kb, 30 JUN 06 (Accessed MAY 09)
R1.1 Sydney Star Observer: Romanian Proposal 28 MAY 98
Asylum, Immigration, Refugees Legislation/Cases/References
1.

National

As at December 2008, Romania does not give full residence and entry rights to gay and lesbian couples [R1.1].

R1.1 PinkNews.co.uk: Same-sex Couples Denied EU Right to Freedom of Movement 11 DEC 08
Civil Unions, Partners: Domestic, Registered Legislation/Cases/References
See also: [MARRIAGE]
1.

National

Romania does not recognize same-sex partnerships [R1.4].


On 11 June 2014, the Chamber of Deputies overwhelmingly rejected 298-4 a bill aiming to legalize the union between same sex persons [R1.3].

On 18 March 2014, the juridical Commission of Romania's Chamber of Deputies was reported to have unanimously rejected a bill which would have legalised same-sex civil partnerships [R1.2].

On 14 February 2011, the Government opposed the introduction of civil unions, which could provide legal recognition for domestic partnerships, including same-sex unions, arguing that the only form of domestic relationship allowed under the Civil Code is marriage between two people of different genders and the proposed bill was not clearly exclusive to different-sex couples [R1.1].

R1.4 The Advocate: EU Court Grants Pension Rights to Partners in Same-Sex Unions 03 APR 08
R1.3 Romania-Insider: Romania's Chamber of Deputies rejects same sex civil union bill proposal by overwhelming majority 11 JUN 14
R1.2 PinkNews: Romania: Same-sex partnerships bill unanimously rejected by parliament committee 18 MAR 14
R1.1 MediaFax.ro: Romanian Govt Opposes Bill Introducing Civil Unions 14 FEB 11
Discrimination Legislation/Cases/References
1.

National:

In February 2002, a Government Ordinance on preventing and punishing all forms of discrimination - including discrimination based on sexual orientation - was fully enacted [R1.1].

R1.1 ILGA-Europe Repeal of Laws Criminalising Same-Sex Relationships in Romania 03 FEB 02

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Homosexuality, Sodomy Legislation/Cases/References
See also: [AGE OF CONSENT]
1.

National:

On 21 December 2001, Article 200 of the Penal Code criminalizing gays and lesbians was removed [R1.9].

In October 1996, Romania's Chamber of Deputies deleted a section of an already-passed Bill that would have punished private gay sex between adults with up to three years probation. But the chamber decided to retain (Article 200) a section that punishes gay sex which causes a "public scandal" with up to five years in prison and another section that bans gay "propaganda, associations or … proselytising" under threat of five years in jail [R1.8].

Previously:

On 10 September 1996, the Romanian Parliament's lower house confirmed in a 174–39 vote to keep homosexuality a crime punishable by up to three years jail or five years if relations take place in public [R1.7].

The Penal Code, Article 200 provided -

'Sexual relations between persons of the same sex'

"Sexual relations between persons of the same sex, committed in public or if they caused a public scandal, are punishable by imprisonment of 1 to 5 years.

The fact that an adult having sex with a minor of the same sex is punishable by a prison sentence of 2 to 7 years and the prohibition of certain rights.

The incentive or enticing a person to engage in relations sexual intercourse between persons of the same sex, as well as propaganda or the association or any other act of proselytism committed in the same order, are A penalty of imprisonment from 1 to 5 years" [R1.6].


On 22 June 2001, the government said it had issued a decree to help end discrimination against gays by advocating the repeal of a law that penalises gays more harshly for sex in public places [R1.5].

In September 2000, Romania was preparing to repeal its sodomy law in order that it may join the European Union [R1.4].

On 27 June 2000, Romanian deputies voted on Wednesday to decriminalise homosexuality but decided to maintain jail terms for overt sexual activity. Homosexuality was unlawful in Romania from 1968 to 2000 [R1.3].

To become effective, the vote had to be also endorsed by parliament's upper house, the Senate [R1.3].

In July 1998, the Council of Europe strongly criticised Romania's parliament after it rejected a government proposal to decriminalise gay sex which would have brought it into line with standards throughout Europe [R1.2].

In April 1998, the new coalition government led by Prime Minister Radu Vasile stated that it would not condone any more violations of human rights and would adopt program to "redefine crimes such as calumny, offences to authorities and sexual relations among persons of the same sex" [R1.1].

R1.9 ILGA-Europe: Repeal of Laws Criminalising Same-Sex Relationships in Romania 03 FEB 02
Planet Out: Romania Lifts Gay Ban; Church Objects 24 DEC 01
R1.8 Melbourne Star Observer: Romania Backs down on Bill 04 OCT 96
R1.7 New Zealand "express": Sex Sanctions 10 OCT 96
Sydney Star Observer: Homosexuality Voted a Crime 19 SEP 96
Melbourne Star Observer: Laws Threat to Gay Groups 19 APR 96
R1.6 Interpol: Sexual offences against children PDF 22.78kb, 30 JUN 06 (Accessed MAY 09)
R1.5 Reuters: Romania Moves to End Discrimination Against Gays 22 JUN 01
R1.4 The Advocate: Romania to Repeal Sodomy Law 26 SEP 00
R1.3 Reuters: Romanian MPs Vote to Decriminalise Homosexuality 28 JUN 00
R1.2 Brother Sister: Homosexuals "Sterile"" 09 JUL 98
R1.1 Brother Sister: Rights on Romanian Agenda30 APR 98
Marriage Legislation/Cases/References
1.

National

On 03 September 2017, ruling Social Democrats party leader Liviu Dragnea reportedly said the party hoped to organize an autumn referendum to restrict the constitutional definition of family, which would effectively rule out the possibility of legalizing same-sex marriage [R1.4].

On 10 May 2017, the government reportedly voted 232-22 with 13 abstentions to adopt a citizens initiative that would aim to change the definition of family in the Constitution. Before becoming law, the proposal to revise the constitution must be adopted by the Senate with a majority of at least two thirds and a referendum must then also be held within 30 days, with a minimum of almost five million people voting to change the law [R1.3].

On 07 June 2013, the commission tasked with revising Romania's Constitution was reported to have adopted an amendment (15 votes in favour and 3 abstentions), describing marriage as a consensual relationship between a man and a woman alone [R1.2].

In July 2009, the new civil code taking effect on 01 January 2010, enshrines traditional marriage in law as between a man and a woman [R1.1].

2.

Courts & Tribunals

On 29 November 2016, for the fourth time, Constitutional Court (CCR) postponed again a decision in the case of the Romanian Adrian Coman and the US-born Clay Hamilton, a gay couple who got married in Belgium and want to have their marriage recognized in Romania. The CCR will seek the opinion of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) as to whether a same-sex couple, married overseas, can be recognized as spouses under Romanian law by way of application of the EU law on family reunification with a EU citizen [R2.4].

On 27 October 2016, it was reported that the Constitutional Court had scheduled a new hearing of the Claibourn Robert Hamilton and Adrian Coman same-sex marriage case for 29 November, though it is not clear if there will be a ruling then [R2.3].

On 20 September 2016, the Consitutional Court was reported to have again postponed ruling on a petition to recognize the same-sex marriage of US citizen Claibourn Robert Hamilton and Romanian national Adrian Coman. The couple were lawfully married six years ago in Belgium, live in the United States and planned to relocate for work and ultimately retire to Romania. The case is rescheduled for 27 October [R2.2].

On 20 July 2016, the nine judges on the Constitutional Court ruled unanimously that a proposal signed by 3 million Romanians this year to change the constitution's definition of marriage was valid, paving the way for a referendum on defining marriage in the constitution as a union strictly between a man and a woman. Currently, the constitution says family starts ''on the basis of freely consenting marriage between spouses'' [R2.1].

R1.4 Reuters Romania to hold same-sex marriage referendum this autumn: ruling party leader 03 SEP 17
R1.3 GayStarNews: Romania government votes to change definition of family in order to ban same-sex marriage 10 MAY 17
R1.2 BalkanInsight: Romania's New Constitution Bans Gay Marriage 07 JUN 13
R1.1 OneNewsNow: Romania stiff-arms same-sex 'marriage' 22 JUL 09
2. Courts & Tribunals
R2.4 RomaniaInsider: Constitutional Court asks EU Court of Justice for opinion in gay couple vs Romania case 30 NOV 16
R2.3 TheStar: Romanian man asks constitutional court to recognize his same-sex marriage 27 OCT 16
R2.2 NBCnews: Romania Postpones Ruling on Same-Sex Marriage of US Citizen 20 SEP 16
R2.1 ReutersUK: Romania moves closer to ruling out possibility of legalising same-sex marriage 20 JUL 16
Parenting, Adoption, Fostering Legislation/Cases/References
1.

National

As at July 2000, gay men and lesbians were reportedly prohibited from adopting children in Romania [R1.1].

R1.1 Associated Press: House OKs Adoption Treaty Measure 18 JUL 00
Privacy Legislation/Cases/References
1.

Courts & Tribunals

On 05 September 2017, the European Court of Human Rights ruled that companies need to make sure that employees are aware in advance of management monitoring of their work email accounts. The judges found that Romanian courts failed to protect Bogdan Barbulescu's private correspondence because his company had not given prior notice that it was monitoring his communications. The company had presented him with printouts of his private messages to his brother and fiance on Yahoo Messenger as evidence of his breach of a company ban on such personal use [C1.2], [R1.1].

C1.2 Judgment: Barbulescu v. Romania No. 61496/08 05 SEP 17
R1.1 CDRinf: European Court Says Companies Should Inform Employees of Email Checks 05 SEP 17

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