gay divorce in Texas

Earlier I posted regarding a gay divorce that was pending here in a Dallas County Court. To refresh everyone’s memory. Two men were married in Massachusetts as they recognize gay marriages there. The couple subsequently moved to Dallas.

Now they want a divorce. As they are no longer residents of Massachusetts, they cannot file there. They have to file in Dallas, Texas where they reside. They filed for divorce in a Dallas County Court and the judge of the 302nd District Court granted the divorce, holding that the ban on gay marriages in Texas was unconstitutional.

The Attorney General’s Office of Texas intervened and appealed the ruling by District Judge Tena Callahan.  The divorce was put on hold while the case was appealed.

The Court of Appeals heard the case yesterday and have taken it under advisement.  There is no time limit on their response.

The Attorney General’s Office argued that you cannot get divorced if the State of Texas does not recognize the marriage.

The attorney for one of the men argued that they are not trying to overturn Texas’ ban on gay marriage, just trying to get his client divorced.  He went on to argue that by granting his client a divorce, the court would actually be supporting the ban on gay marriage by ending one more gay marriage.  Interesting argument.

I think the most interesting aspect of this case is the “full faith and credit” that States extend to other states when it comes to judicial orders, etc…  I am not sure how the Texas Attorney General can justify not recognizing a divorce that was created legally in another state.  If Texas wants to ban gay marriages in their state then that is up to them.  I am not sure how that corresponds to denying another states legal marriage.  The ruling by the Court of Appeals should be very interesting.  I will update this post when I learn more information.

You can read more about the case here.

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  1. gay divorce in Texas | The Dallas Divorce Blog - September 2, 2010

    […] 5th District Court of appeals for Texas has ruled on the gay divorce case.  As a refresher, two men who were married in Massachusetts sought a divorce in Dallas County. […]

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