Marital Property

Scotland recognizes same-sex marriage

The Scottish Parliament passed the Marriage and Civil Partnership Bill allowing and recognizing same-sex marriage. It is the 17th country to do so. read article The vote was an astonishing 105-18.

Same-sex marriage gets a foothold in Utah and Ohio

A federal district court judge in Utah struck down the state's marriage laws to the extent they disallowed same-sex couples to marry. Kitchen v. Herbert, (D. Utah 2013). Holding the right to marry to be a fundamental constitutional right and denial of that right to same-sex couples a violation of the equal protection clause in the U.S. Constitution, the judge refused to stay his opinion. As a result hundreds of couples began applying for and receiving marriage licenses. The decision is being appealed by...

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Same-sex marriage in New Mexico

The Supreme Court of New Mexico opened the state to same-sex marriages in the case of Griego v. Oliver,  2013 WL 6670704 (N.M. 2013). It interpreted New Mexico statutes as denying the right of same-sex couples to marry and then held those statutes unconstitutional under the equal protection clause in Article 18 of Section II of the New Mexico Constitution. The court unanimously held that the statutes created a classification based on sexual orientation and that such statutes should be subject...

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Hawai`i, Illinois & New Jersey join the states that allow and recognize same-sex marriage

After passage of same-sex marriage laws in both Hawai`i and Illinois and constitutional litigation in New Jersey, seventeen (17) jurisdictions in the US recognize and allow same-sex marriage. The list includes: California, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Hawai`i, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington.

Illinois is likely to become the 15th state to allow same-sex marriage

The Illinois House has passed a marriage equality bill that is virtually certain to become law in some form in the near future given the support in the Senate and by the Governor. Once that happens, 15 states will have same-sex marriage along with the District of Columbia. The outcome is more uncertain in Hawai`i but the legislature may vote in favor of a same-sex marriage bill in the next days.

Same sex marriage to begin in New Jersey

The Supreme Court of New Jersey unanimously upheld the decision of a trial judge to allow same-sex marriage to proceed pending appeal of the trial judge's ruling that the New Jersey civil union law violates equal protection by denying same-sex couples the same rights as granted to married couples under federal law. Garden State Equality v. Dow, (N.J. 2013). The court had previously held that same-sex couples were entitled under the state constitution to the same rights...

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Same-sex marriages resume in California

In 2008, by a 4-3 vote, the Supreme Court of California held that its state constitutional right to equal protection of the laws grants same-sex couples the same right to marry as is enjoyed by opposite-sex couples, using strict scrutiny to come to this conclusion. In re Marriage Cases, 183 P.2d 384 (Cal. 2008). The court held that the right to marry is a basic civil right whose denial impinges upon same-sex couples' fundamental privacy interests in having official family...

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Section 3 of DOMA struck down

Section 3 of the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), 1 U.S.C. §7, Pub. L. No. 104-199, §3, 110 Stat. 2419, passed in 1996, denied federal recognition to same-sex marriages. This meant, for example, that for such purposes as calculating federal income tax, same-sex couples were not recognized as married and entitled to the tax advantages (and disadvantages) of marriage even if they were validly married under state law. A same-sex couple validly married in Massachusetts under Massachusetts law would file state tax returns as a married couple but would then have to file...

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