Via the Tico Times:
A Costa Rican judge has granted the first openly gay common-law marriage in Central America, said Francisco Madrigal, political affairs director for the Center for Research and Promotion of Human Rights in Central America (CIPAC). On Tuesday morning, news broke that Gerald Castro and Cristian Zamora, a gay couple in the city of Goicoechea, north of San José, were granted a common-law marriage by the Family Court there. Along with being the first legal recognition of a same-sex relationship in Central America, the decision could set an example for judges elsewhere in the country to recognize gay relationships and even adoption. But both supporters and opponents of the decision expect a forthcoming legal battle over the landmark ruling.
A civil unions bill is pending in the Costa Rica legislature. (Tipped by JMG reader Luis)