New Jersey Judge Paves Way Same-Sex Marriage
Superior Court Judge Mary Jacobson denied the state’s motion to stay her September 27 ruling that civil unions were insufficient because they hindered federal benefits.
In that ruling, Jacobson cited the U.S. Supreme Court’s June rejection of part of the federal Defense of Marriage Act, a move that ensured that same-sex spouses legally married in a state may receive federal benefits.
The state argued in its appeal that it already provides equal marital rights and benefits to same-sex couples in New Jersey with civil unions, saying any federal benefits or rights deprived to partners in civil unions fall on the shoulders of the federal government, not theirs.
But in her ruling on Thursday, Jacobson said the inability for partners in civil unions to access federal marriage benefits violates New Jersey’s constitution.