The Finnish parliament approved a law on 28. september 2001 allowing gays to register as couples and obtain some but not all the rights of married couples. The law became effective in the beginning of March 2002.
The legislation says Finns who are at least 18 can register a same-sex union in a civil ceremony comparable to marriage. The new law does not allow gay couples to adopt children or automatically use the same surname.
The law gives gay couples the same rights as married heterosexual couples when inheriting each other's property and in cases of divorce.