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Challenge to Prop 8

The constitutional questions in Strauss v. Horton , 2009 Cal. LEXIS 4626 (Cal. May 26, 2009) involve more than just the specific issue of same-sex marriage in California. Another issue is: who is the final authority on an issue of equal protection? In Strauss , the California Supreme Court upheld the...

High Court Hears Arguments on Privacy of Petition Signers

WASHINGTON, D.C. - (Mealey's) Individuals who signed a referendum petition opposing Washington state's "everything but marriage" same-sex domestic partner law have a right to keep their identities private, an attorney representing the signers argued on April 28 before the U.S. Supreme...

Argentina legalizes gay marriage in historic vote

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina - (AP) Argentina legalized same-sex marriage Thursday, becoming the first country in Latin America to declare that gays and lesbians have all the legal rights, responsibilities and protections that marriage brings to heterosexual couples. After a marathon debate in Argentina's...

Perry v. Schwarzenegger Resurrects Right of Marriage for Same-Sex Couples

By Diana Richmond, Partner, Sideman & Bancroft, L.L.P. “In December 2010, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals will decide whether same-sex couples can marry in California,” writes Diana Richmond. “The U.S. District Court ruled it unconstitutional to deny same-sex couples the same...

Texas court denies jurisdiction in same-sex divorce case involving couple married in Massachusetts and rejects same-sex marriage/equal protection arguments: In re J.B. (Aug. 31, 2010)

A Texas appellate court recently reversed a trial court's holding that it had jurisdiction over a same-sex divorce case. Specifically, the trial court held that it had jurisdiction "to hear a suit for divorce filed by persons legally married in another jurisdiction (in this case, Massachusetts...

When a Same Sex Partner is a "Parent" Required to Pay Child Support

This Emerging Issues Analysis analyzes (1) whether Family Court has subject matter jurisdiction to adjudicate whether a former same sex partner who has no biological or adoptive ties to a child should be chargeable with paying support and (2) whether this former same sex partner should be ordered to...

Ask Lambda Legal: Don’t be a Marriage Collector

Q: My partner and I got married in California in 2008 before Prop 8 passed--as New Yorkers we now want to marry in our home state. Is this a good idea? A: As we celebrate marriage equality in New York, the new law has also caused some people to wonder how this law affects them and their families,...

Justice Department Keeps Up Pressure On Texas Voting Laws

POLITICS AND LEADERSHIP: Last month, the U.S. Justice Department asked a panel of judges in San Antonio to order continued scrutiny of Texas' voting procedures, despite the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling in June nullifying the requirement for the state to seek federal approval for any changes to...

same sex marriage freeway sign

Abercrombie Calls Gay Marriage Special Session

Saying the votes are there, Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie (D) called for a special session next month to allow lawmakers to act on legislation that would make the Aloha State the 14th to legalize same-sex marriage. The session has been scheduled for Oct. 28. "The decision to call a special session...

Oklahoma Governor Blocks Same-Sex Benefits For National Guard

FALLIN BLOCKS SAME-SEX BENEFITS FOR GUARD: Saying she was honoring the wishes of Sooner State voters, Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin (R) has ordered her state's National Guard units to stop processing requests for military benefits for same-sex couples. The directive comes after the Guard had previously...

same sex wedding bands

States Continue to Restrict and Expand Opportunities to Vote

AZ SWITCHING TO TWO-TRACK VOTING SYSTEM: Arizona could have a dual-track voting system requiring the use of two different ballots in next year's elections, as a result of an opinion issued last week by the state's attorney general, Tom Horne. Under the new system, only those voters who registered...

Same-Sex Marriage in Hawaii and Illinois, Abortion in Michigan and Oklahoma

HI LEGALIZES GAY MARRIAGE: Gov. Neil Abercrombie (D) signed the "Hawaii Marriage Equality Act of 2013" (SB 1) last week, enabling the Aloha State to edge out Illinois to become the 15th in the nation to legalize same-sex marriages. Illinois passed its own same-sex marriage bill last week (SB...

State Net Capitol Journal Spotlight: Last Year's Hot Issues Likely To Keep Smoldering In States

In part II of our legislative preview, we take a look at a few more issues likely to occupy state lawmakers' attention in 2014. The majority were hot issues in the states last year and even before, but they have only been stoked by recent Supreme Court decisions, continued Congressional inaction...

Virginia Department of Taxation Will Not Recognize Joint Returns for Same-Sex Couples After Windsor

BY: THOMAS W. ALDOUS, JR. The Virginia Department of Taxation recently announced that same-sex couples married in another state must file separate Virginia income tax returns even though they file a federal return as a married couple. Background . In United States v. Windsor , 186 L. Ed. 2d...

Once Again: Voting Rights and Gay Marriage In The News

VOTING RIGHTS BILL INTRODUCED IN CONGRESS: A bill introduced in Congress last month would require four southern states to once again obtain federal preapproval before making any changes to their voting laws by replacing parts of the Voting Rights Act struck down by the U.S. Supreme Court last year. The...

Skirmishes In States Over Same-Sex Marriage

SKIRMISHES IN STATES OVER SAME-SEX MARRIAGE: Last week was a busy one for same-sex marriage, with significant developments on the issue in multiple states. Some of the biggest news came out of Nevada, where Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto (D) and Gov. Brian Sandoval (R) announced the state was...

Brewer Vetoes Anti-Gay Bill, More Loom Across States

BREWER VETOES ANTI-GAY BILL, MORE LOOM ACROSS STATES: Amidst much hue and cry last week, Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer (R) vetoed SB 1062, the highly controversial measure that would have allowed businesses to legally cite their religious beliefs as reason to refuse services to gay, bisexual and transgender...

Governor Beshear Orders Defense Of Kentucky Gay Marriage Ban

BESHEAR ORDERS DEFENSE OF KY GAY MARRIAGE BAN: Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear (D) said the Bluegrass State would hire a private sector attorney to defend the state's ban on recognizing same-sex marriages performed in other states. Beshear made the announcement last Tuesday shortly after state Attorney...

State Net Capitol Journal Legislative Updates: Abortion Rules, Abortion Rules, and More Abortion Rules

SOCIAL POLICY: A federal judge upholds an ARIZONA law that bans pill-induced abortions after seven weeks of pregnancy. U.S. District Judge David C. Bury said overturning the law was "not in the public interest," allowing it to go into effect last Tuesday (AZCENTRAL.COM). • WEST VIRGINIA...

Federal Judge Strikes Down Pennsylvania Same-Sex Marriage Ban, Resulting in Significant Impact on Employee Benefit Plans

On May 20, 2014, a federal judge in the case of Whitewood v. Wolf struck down both Pennsylvania's ban on marriage for same-sex couples and its prohibition against recognition of same-sex marriages legally entered into in other jurisdictions, [ enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers ...

Diana Richmond on Hollingsworth v. Perry and U.S. v. Windsor: After Jubilation, What?

Last month, as a result of the decision of United States District Court Judge John E. Jones III in Whitewood v. Wolf , 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 68771 (M.D. Pa. May 20, 2014), [ enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers ], the State of Pennsylvania became the 19th state to recognize same-sex marriage...

Whitewood v. Wolf Legalizes Same-Sex Marriage in Pennsylvania

In a decision handed down on May 20th, Federal District Judge John E. Jones III struck down Pennsylvania's ban on same-sex marriage, concluding that "all couples deserve equal dignity in the realm of civil marriage." Whitewood v. Wolf , No. 1:13-CV-1861, 2014 U.S. Dist. Lexis 68771, at...

State Net Capitol Journal Constitutional Rights Updates: Voting Law Challenges Create Uncertainty Ahead Of Midterms

Just months ahead of the midterm elections in November, court challenges to tough new voting laws in several states have thrown the electoral process into legal limbo. Nearly all of the laws — imposing strict photo ID requirements and restricting early voting — were passed since 2011 in Republican...