US: Arizona widower seeks recognition of marriage
A man is seeking for legal recognition of his marriage in his home state of Arizona, after his husband died of cancer.
Fred McQuire and his late husband George Martinez travelled to California in order to marry, after Martinez was diagnosed with cancer.
McQuire has now found himself amid a battle over same-sex marriage in the state, as he seeks to have their marriage, which took place after spending 45 years together, recognised in the state of Arizona.
He is currently barred from being recognised as a surviving spouse, as their marriage is not legally recognised by the state.
Plans to cremate Martinez’s body have been put on hold, even though he died weeks ago. McQuire is unable to file for death benefits as a surviving spouse.
A judge will today hear arguments in the case of the whether the marriage can be considered legal in Arizona. US District Judge John Sedwick is also set to consider requests to allow a death certificate recognising McQuire as the spouse.
The state argued that the ban on recognising the marriage does not violate constitutional protections, and have asked the request to be rejected.
The request from the couple was made as part of a lawsuit featuring 18 people are challenging the state’s ban on same-sex marriage.
Friday’s hearing will only address McQuire’s requests.
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