Lawyers Tell Calif. Gay Couples Not To Wait To Wed
Posted on May 28, 2008
Filed Under Gay News Blog
California officials plan to allow same-sex couples to wed as soon as Saturday, June 14 and some legal analysts advised those interested not to wait too long to get married.
County clerks association president Stephen Weir said he was told by the Office of Vital Records that clerks will be authorized to hand out licenses on June 14 —which is exactly 30 days after the California Supreme Court struck down the state’s gay marriage ban. The justices’ decisions typically take effect after 30 days.
An effort, however, is under way to get an initiative on the November ballot that would overrule the Supreme Court’s decision and amend the state constitution to ban gay marriage. Proponents said they have collected enough signatures to put it on the ballot.
That’s why some legal scholars and gay advocates advise same-sex couples interested in marriage to plan their nuptials for the summer.
Constitutional law Prof. Jesse Choper, the former Dean of UC Berkeley’s law school, noted that the ballot measure -if passed- cannot be applied retroactively. So, he said any weddings taking place before the vote would be legally protected.
“You have everything to gain and nothing to lose,” Choper explained. “There may be this five month window where any marriages, no matter what happens with the consitutional amendment, are valid.”
Added Molly McKay of Marriage Equity USA: “I think as a safeguard, to insure that your family has protections, you should probably go ahead and get married before November because there is no retroactivity written into the statue, and therefore its very likely that, at least the worst case scenario, the marriages performed before November would be valid and recognized.” See Lawyers Tell Calif. Gay Couples Not To Wait To Wed
CBS 5, CA -
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