Lambda Legal will request 11th Circuit review of Georgia marriage case

Editors' Note: This post was originally published by Georgia Equality. Read their piece here

Late Thursday, January 29, U.S. District Court Judge William S. Duffey, Jr. released an order in Lambda Legal’s case seeking the freedom to marry in Georgia, Inniss v. Aderhold. In the order, Judge Duffey granted, in part, a motion to stay the proceedings in the case. But he also certified an earlier order in the case – his January 8 order denying the defendants’ motion to dismiss the case – for immediate appeal to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit.

Judge Duffey did not rule on the constitutionality of Georgia’s marriage ban, instead indicating that the 11th Circuit should review the case before he issues an order. Already before the 11th Circuit are marriage cases from Florida and Alabama, with the Florida case fully briefed. No oral argument has been scheduled.

Legal writer Lyle Denniston explained:

Judge Duffey noted that the Eleventh Circuit Court already has before it a federal judge’s decision nullifying Florida’s ban, and he pointed out that he has taken a different approach from the Florida decision and suggested that it would be proper for the Eleventh Circuit Court to have those differences before it, if it is willing to let Georgia appeal.

Read the order here. 

The plaintiffs and defendants now have ten days to appeal the January 8 order to the 11th Circuit, which can either accept or reject the appeal. Lambda Legal has said they will be filing an appeal within a few days.

If the 11th Circuit accepts the appeal, Georgia’s case will be on the same track for a decision from the 11th Circuit as the Florida and Alabama cases, marking a definite step forward for the freedom to marry in Georgia.

We know this order is a bit confusing – and that Georgians across the state are excited about the campaign to win marriage in the Peach State. That’s why Georgia Equality and Lambda Legal are hosting a Marriage Town Hall on February 4.

RSVP for the Georgia Equality and Lambda Legal Marriage Town Hall HERE.