Baker v. Nelson, a case that went to the Minnesota Supreme Court, ruled that a state law
prohibiting same-sex marriage did not violate any terms in the United
States Constitution. Now, more than four decades later, the decision has
been overruled by the United States Supreme Court’s decision in
Obergefell v. Hodges.
In a narrow 5-4 ruling that took place on June 26th, 2015, the presiding justices determined that limiting marriage to heterosexual
couples was actually a violation of the right to pursue happiness, effectively
dismantling the previous decision. After Justice Kennedy wrote a statement
for the majority, people rejoiced and took to the streets in celebration.
Others, however, felt quite an opposite reaction, believing the decision
was an affront to state’s rights and possibly even religious freedom.
Various and recent polls suggest, however, that three out of every five
Americans actually approve of same-sex marriages being legal.
Will Family Law Be Affected?
Legalizing same-sex marriage nationwide is not necessarily an isolated
decision. Other aspects of family law are sure to be affected in one way
or another, although the details of the ramifications are not yet clear.
Divorce, in particular, is being addressed, as same-sex married couples
also won the right to file for divorce in any state.
Previously, if a same-sex couple married in one of the 37 states that had
legalized same-sex marriage – California, for example – but
then moved to a state that had not – Texas, Alabama, and others
– they could not dissolve their marriage there. Instead, they would
have to move again to a state that recognized their union, live there
from anywhere between six months to two years, and then file for divorce.
To some, this ruling comes as a breath of fresh air and a means to end
a marriage that had fallen apart.
If you are a same-sex couple living in Arizona and need help with legal
matters concerning your new found rights, speak to a Tempe family law
attorney from Arizona Family Law Attorneys today. Since
our establishment in 2009, our firm has won the trust of our clients and
delivered outstanding results at affordable rates. You can start working
with us today by requesting a
30-minute consultation with “Superb” Avvo-Rated Attorney Shawnna R. Riggers.