For same-sex couples, a patchwork of marriage laws

Many lesbian and gay couples struggle with the classification and recognition of their relationships due to varying marriage equality laws and freedom to marry bans throughout the United States.

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Serious legal hurdles for divorce of same-sex couples

It's only been two months since the District of Columbia legalized the freedom to marry, but local attorney Lawrence Jacobs is already cautioning his clients: Marriage may be allowed, but divorce will be much harder to do.

While the District and five states have legalized marriage equality and consequently allow divorces, granting divorces to same-sex couples elsewhere is often murky. As married same-sex couples cross into states that explicitly ban or don't recognize the freedom to marry, they face a dilemma.

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Texas court hears state’s appeal in divorce of same-sex couple

A lawyer for a Dallas man trying to divorce the man he married in Massachusetts told a Texas appeals court Wednesday that his client is entitled to a divorce because he had a valid marriage.

But the Texas Attorney General's Office argued before the three-judge 5th Texas Court of Appeals panel that the marriage isn't recognized by Texas, so they cannot get a divorce. Jimmy Blacklock, an assistant Texas solicitor general, said the men's union can only be voided. "The parties lack standing to file a divorce case because they're not married," he said.

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Civil union bill to hit Pennsylvania House

A Pennsylvania lawmaker is gathering legislative support for a bill that would make civil unions for same-sex couples a reality in the Keystone State.

The measure, the first of its kind in the Pennsylvania legislature, is being spearheaded by Pennsylvania Rep. Mark Cohen (D-202nd Dist.).

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Alert: State Senator Daylin Leach of Pennsylvania to debate Maggie Gallagher TONIGHT at 7pm

Freedom to Marry Voice for Equality, Senator Daylin Leach, is one of the LGBT community's strongest allies.

He is the sponsor of a Freedom to Marry bill in Pennsylvania, and last week successfully led the effort to table an amendment to Pennsylvania's constitution, sponsored by State Senator John Eichelberger, to effectively ban marriage equality.

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Pennsylvania Senate Panel tables bill to ban the Freedom to Marry

The latest effort to amend Pennsylvania's constitution to effectively ban marriage equality is stalling.

The state Senate Judiciary Committee voted narrowly Tuesday to table the measure defining marriage as a union between a man and a woman.

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Pennsylvania Senate Committee to vote on Marriage Ban

A Pennsylvania State Senate committee is expected to vote tomorrow (March 16, 2010) on a proposed constitutional amendment banning the freedom to marry.

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Video: PA State Senator Daylin Leach speaks on the Freedom to Marry

Pennsylvania State Senator Daylin Leach, a Freedom to Marry Voice for Equality, speaks in the Capitol building in Harrisburg on his bill, SB 935 that, if passed would honor the marriages of gay couples in Pennsylvania.

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Proponents rally in support of Freedom to Marry bill for Pennsylvania

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
February 9, 2010

Proponents of the freedom to marry gathered on the steps of the PA Capitol rotunda Monday and chanted, "Pennsylvania can't you see -- what equality means to me." They were supporters of Senate Bill 935, by Sen. Daylin Leach, D-Montgomery, which would honor the marriages of gay couples. Leach said laws outlawing marriage equality are "the last bastion of society-sanctioned discrimination." [Link]

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Social issues dominate Pennsylvania gubernatorial debate

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
January 29, 2010

The Democratic candidates for governor Friday night were sharply divided on the issue of legalizing the freedom to marry. Scranton Mayor Chris Doherty and Montgomery County Commissioner Joe Hoeffel received applause from about 300 people gathered at the PA Progressive Summit when they said they support legislation to allow gays and lesbians to marry. [Link] See video below:

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