Latest release

Relationship as reported for couples (RLCP)

Census of Population and Housing: Census dictionary
Reference period
2021

Definition

This variable records the partner relationship as it is reported for all couples in an occupied dwelling. It shows the number of people who reported their relationship as being 'husband, wife or partner', or 'de facto partners'.

Scope

Persons in Couple families

Categories

CodeCategory

1

Husband, wife or partner as reported, opposite-sex couple

2

De facto partner as reported, opposite-sex couple

3

Husband, wife or partner as reported, same-sex couple

4

De facto partner as reported, same-sex couple

@

Not applicable

V

Overseas visitor

Number of categories: 6

Not applicable (@) category comprises:

  • Lone Parent and Other Families
  • Persons in Non-family/Non-classifiable households
  • Persons in Non-private dwellings
  • Persons in migratory, off-shore or shipping SA1s

Question(s) from the Census form

Is the person: Male, Female, Non-binary sex

    Is the person: Male, Female, Non-binary sex
    Is Person 1:

    If these options do not describe the person, they can Select something other than male or female.

    Male

    Female

    What is the person’s relationship to Person 1/Person 2?

      What is the person’s relationship to Person 1/Person 2?
      What is Person 2's relationship to Person 1?

      Examples of other relationships: Son-in-law, Grand-daughter, Uncle, Boarder.

      More information

      Husband or wife of Person 1

      De facto partner of Person 1

      Child of Person 1

      Stepchild of Person 1

      Brother or sister of Person 1

      Unrelated flatmate or co-tenant of Person 1

      Other relationship to Person 1 (please specify)

        More information

        Additional information relating to the question on: What is Person 2's relationship to Person 1?

        More information

        What is Person 2's relationship to Person 1?

        Examples of other relationships: Son-in-law, Grand-daughter, Uncle, Boarder.

        More information

        If more than one response applies, select only the option that shows the relationship that most closely applies.

        How this variable is created

        Data on the relationships people have with others in the same dwelling, including husband/wife or de facto partner, is derived from the Relationship in household and Sex questions on the Census form.

        History and changes

        This variable was introduced in 2011.

        In December 2017, amendments to the Marriage Act 1961 came into effect enabling equality for all couples. The amendments removed references to sex or gender and redefined marriage as 'the union of two people to the exclusion of all others'. Registered marriages reported in Census data releases will include same-sex couples and opposite sex couples only.

        In 2021, no changes have been made to the question. However, due to the amendments in 2017, more couples will be able to identify as being in registered marriages.

        Data use considerations

        Due to the amendments in 2017 to the Marriage Act 1961, more couples may identify in category 3 ‘Husband, wife or partner as reported, same-sex couple’ resulting in higher figures to previous Censuses. Conversely, category 4 will decrease.

        For this derivation, the binary sex variable (SEXP) is used. Where a respondent has answered the sex question with ‘non-binary sex’ and provided a male or female response, the male or female response will be used to determine the binary sex variable. Otherwise, SEXP will be derived by statistical process using random allocation.

        Related variables and glossary terms

        Other ABS sources