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Texas Attorney General says same-sex divorces aren't legal

Earlier this year it seemed that same-sex couples would be given the right to legally divorce, just as a heterosexual couple can. However, recent opposition from the Texas Attorney General has thrown up a road block.

The heart of the Attorney General’s issue stems from the fact that gay marriage is not recognized in the state of Texas. As such, he argues that gay divorce would be unconstitutional. The Deputy Attorney General agrees and feels that the state must fight to defend the law. So when a gay couple who was married in Massachusetts was granted a divorce, the Attorney General stepped in.

However, the AG’s efforts to stop Texas same-sex divorce haven’t been easy. After contesting a lower court’s decision to agree to the dissolution of the marriage, and losing an appeal, the decision now lies at the feet of the Supreme Court.

While some are in opposition of the Attorney General’s endeavors, others believe that he is simply trying to protect marriage laws. The Deputy AG feels that it is impossible to allow for gay divorce without first recognizing the marriage. However, the couple’s attorney claims that regardless of how Texas feels about same-sex marriage, the two individuals were legally married in another state so the union is valid.

One Supreme Court Justice is taking an important look into the issue and considering the overall ramifications of not allowing for gay divorce. For example, property division, taxes and child custody issues may be greatly affected when a legal process is not in place to oversee these matters should a couple decide to break up.

The decision by the Supreme Court may be announced as early as next spring.

Source: Dallas Voice, “Texas Supreme Court weighs gay divorce,” Anna Waugh, Nov. 8, 2013

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