On October 17, 2014, a ruling in the federal court legalized same-sex marriages in the State of Arizona, making Arizona the 31st state in the nation to legalize marriage for same-sex couples. In a ruling issued by the Honorable John Sedwick of the U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona, the Court declared Arizona’s ban on same-sex marriage as an unconstitutional violation of equal protection of the laws. Just hours later, Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne announced his decision not to appeal the ruling of the lower court, instructing county clerks throughout the state to begin issuing marriage license to same-sex couples immediately.
As many have asked, what is the exact impact of this ruling? For one, same-sex couples will have just as many marriage rights as any other married couple in the state. Furthermore, Arizona will now have to recognized same-sex marriages performed out of state as valid. In addition to legalizing the marriage process, same-sex couples will be able to legally divorce in Arizona courts, allowing the separation process to be far more equitable. Arizona has also began to review several other laws such as how it issues birth certificates and laws surrounding the adoption process.
With so may legal issues at stake, you are strongly encouraged to consult with an experienced Phoenix family law attorney in effort to determine what option is best for you. With over 30 years of combined experience, the attorneys at Lasiter & Jackson will aggressively represent your interests in any family court proceeding. Contact us today to schedule a free 30-minute consultation.