Five out of the nine Supreme Court Justices ruled on June 26th, 2015 that same-sex marriages were to be legalized and recognized by all states. The decision is seen as a massive victory for LGBT activists, who have been pushing for the right to marry people of their own gender for decades. Justice Kennedy, one of the majority that voted in favor of the ruling, expressed in a follow-up dissertation that the decision would provide same-sex couples with equal dignity in the eyes of the law.
Parties who oppose the decision — an estimated 40% of Americans, by recent poll surveys — were quick to let their opinions be known. In fact, the four justices that voted against the ruling each made their own written dissents. Some cited that the decision was in direct violation of states’ rights to create their own laws, others said it had nothing to do with Constitutional rights, and some cited it as an affront to religious freedoms.
New Marriage and Divorce Rights Have Been Granted
An interesting side effect of same-sex marriage legalization nationwide is that it also allows same-sex couples to file for divorce, regardless of where they now live. In the past, same-sex married couples could not divorce if they lived in a state that did not recognize the validity of their union. To many, this resulted in entrapment in marriages that they wanted to end. Even if it does feel ironic, they can now enjoy the right to dissolve their marriage.
As for other issues with family law, some changes may have to be made. In particular, lawmakers may have to reconsider how to deal with child custody claims and rules surrounding a father’s rights during a divorce. For now, however, it seems none of that will be significantly altered.
If you are in a same-sex marriage in Southern California and would like to know more about your newfound rights, contact a Pasadena family attorney from the Law Office of Fritzie Galliani, APC today. We have been helping families through difficult times for more than 30 years and can surely assist you in whatever matter is troubling you.