The date was June 26th, 2015 and it would prove to be a day that would be remembered in history. The United States Supreme Court ruled in a narrow 5 to 4 vote that same-sex marriages were to be deemed legal in all 50 states.
Some supporters of the ruling and members of the LGBTQ community celebrated by taking to the streets with rainbow-colored flags, banners, and signs. As Justice Anthony Kennedy – the justice who tipped the scale in favor of the decision – stated in an address he made public shortly after the vote was completed, the ruling was to grant same-sex couples "equal dignity in the eyes of the law." It was also mentioned that if the protections granted by the Fourteenth Amendment were to be upheld, same-sex marriage would have to be legalized.
What the Opposition Has to Say About It
The ruling was met with obvious and expected opposition the moment it was announced. According to many recent polls, up to 40% of Americans were against same-sex marriages. The members of this comparatively large minority see the decision as an infringement of states' rights, as it overruled 13 bans that were previously in place.
Additionally, they also cited religious freedoms and felt that the decision was a direct affront to their personal beliefs. Churches that directly oppose of same-sex marriages, however, will not be forced to perform them.
Other Aspects of Family Law
Divorce, as ironic as it might seem, is important to mention in light of the recent ruling. Same-sex couples will be allowed to file for divorce, no matter what state they are living in. They have also been granted more defined inheritance rights and equality when filing taxes and receiving Social Security benefits.
Obergefell v. Hodges, the case that spurred on the Supreme Court's decision, did not directly address adoption rights, though. It could be entirely possible that same-sex couples will still be unable to adopt children in states that are considered more traditionally conservative.
At Ehrlich, Petriello, Gudin, Plaza & Reed, Attorneys at Law, our team has more than 65 years of combined experience helping people through complex divorces and serious family law disputes. If you would like support in a case regarding the Supreme Court's ruling, contact our Newark family law lawyers today.