State Laws and Legislation

Hawaii Marriage/Relationship Recognition Law

Licenses marriages for same-sex couples? No.

Honors marriages of same-sex couples from other jurisdictions? No.
Hawaii law states: “The marriage contract … shall be only between a man and a woman. … Nothing in this chapter shall be construed to render unlawful, or otherwise affirmatively punishable at law, the solemnization of same-sex relationships by religious organizations; provided that nothing in this section shall be construed to confer any of the benefits, burdens, or obligations of marriage under the laws of Hawaii. … The Legislature shall have the power to reserve marriage to opposite-sex couples.”

Any form of statewide relationship recognition for same-sex couples? Yes.
In 1997 the Hawaii Legislature passed a law that allows same-sex couples to enter into a reciprocal beneficiary relationship. Couples secure the following benefits from a reciprocal beneficiary relationship: inheritance without a will, ability to sue for the wrongful death of their reciprocal beneficiary, hospital visitation and health care decisions, consent to postmortem exams, loan eligibility, property rights (including joint tenancy), tort liability and protection under Hawaii domestic violence laws.

Citations: HAW. REV. STAT. § 572-1; HRS § 572-1.6; HAW. CONST. Art. I, § 23.; HAW. REV. STAT. §572C-1 – C-7.

Updated: Fri, March 09, 2007 - 12:00:23