Archiver > ADVANCED-RESEARCH > 2007-01 > 1169476059

From: Regan Conley <>
Subject: Re: [ADVANRES] Marriage Laws (for Bob Gillis)
Date: Mon, 22 Jan 2007 09:27:39 -0500
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In-Reply-To: <>

On Jan 15, 2007, at 4:00 PM, wrote:
> -but I can't think of any legal jurisdictions where a marriage that
> was
> considered legal when/where it was performed is challenged by law
> by other
> jurisdictions.
> Joan

Joan, I can think of at least two situations.

The US does not recognize multiple marriage and never has. This was
a sticking point to Utah's admission as a state, and they changed
their state law to limit marriages to one at a time. This affects
families in the modern era, primarily as an immigration issue. In
those places, such as many Muslim countries, where a man may take
more than one wife, only one, usually the first, is recognized as his
wife. Only one spouse is allowed to immigrate. This even affects
families here on diplomatic missions.

Secondly, the US as a federal entity and most states do not recognize
marriages between people of the same gender, even if these marriages
were legal where performed. Marriage between people of the same
gender is legal in Canada (er, all of Canada, or is it still province
by province, like the US?), the UK, Holland, Spain, and a couple of
US states. Again, this presents immigration challenges for people
from other countries, and at this point, massive confusion for
American couples. If you were legally married in Massachusetts, and
you move to say Illinois, is your marriage still valid?

Oh, and a third! Anti-miscegenation laws were lifted at different
times in different US states. In the famous Loving v. Virginia case,
the Lovings were legally married in the District of Columbia, but
their marriage wasn't recognized by Virginia. They were forced to
return to DC for nearly a decade while the case worked it's way
through the Supreme Court.


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