A German court ruled against legalizing gay marriage, saying one German man is limited to a "civil partnership" with his partner of 17 years.
Andreas Boettcher (pictured), who was married in another country, went to court to overturn his single status on a German registration card, therefore bringing the issue of gay marriage to a Berlin court.
Boettcher married his Spanish partner in Montreal in 2006, according to the Associated Press. Gay marriage is legal in both Canada and Spain, where the couple holds a family registry.
German civil partnerships are the equivalent of a civil union in the United States. German couples registered as civil partners can receive some basic rights but do not receive many rights associated with marriage.