A judge in Brazil granted family to a man and two women, arguing there is nothing in the current law to prevent the union from being recognized by the courts.

The trio lives in Rio de Janeiro and has been together for three years. They share bills, household expenses, opened a joint bank account, and wanted to be legally protected in case of death or separation of a partner.

The BBC gives more details:

Public Notary Claudia do Nascimento Domingues has said the man and two women should be entitled to family rights.

She says there is nothing in law to prevent such an arrangement.

…The three individuals, who have declined to speak to the press, have lived in Rio de Janeiro together for three years and share bills and other expenses.

Ms Domingues says they have already opened a joint bank account, which is also not prohibited by any law.

According to Globo TV, the union was formalised three months ago, but only became public this week. 

Nathaniel Santos Batista Junior, a jurist who helped draft the document, said the idea was to protect their rights in case of separation or death of a partner, Globo reports.

Ms Domingues, who is based in the Sao Paulo city of Tupa, said the move reflected the fact that the idea of a “family” had changed.

“We are only recognising what has always existed. We are not inventing anything.”

“For better or worse, it doesn’t matter, but what we considered a family before isn’t necessarily what we would consider a family today.”

Not everyone shares the judge’s sentiments. While Judge Dominguez has approved their union, local and religious officials called it “absurd and totally illegal.”

It remains to be seen if local officials, courts, and health insurance companies will honor the ruling and allow the trio have family rights and protections, but it will be interesting to see how this case continues to develop.

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