Tuesday, April 10, 2007

NY Judge Recognizes Foreign Gay Marriage

Wow. I wonder if this will ever get national media attention. The ruling happened back on March 12th. Maybe I missed the media frenzy, but I get only one relevant hit from a search on "Lefkowitz NY" in Google News. From the first article:

In a landmark case, a U.S. court has ruled gay couples who get married in Canada can be treated as legally wed in the state of New York.

Justice Joan Lefkowitz of the New York Supreme Court ruled last week same-sex marriages performed outside the country are valid, even though gay New Yorkers cannot be legally married in their home state. ...

Last summer, the New York Court of Appeal upheld the state's century-old definition of marriage as a union between a man and a woman.

But Lefkowitz found that ruling did not address the issue of marriages performed outside the state.

She then applied the legal test of comity, the principle that countries should recognize each other's laws on marriage and other such issues as long as they don't offend community values or run strongly against public policy. (Polygamy, for example, is accepted in some countries but not in the U.S.).

She noted that, historically, New York has on many occasions recognized foreign marriages that could not have been legally performed in the state.

h/t Stephanie, in Victoria from Pam's.