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Same-Sex Divorce Just as Legal as the Marriage
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same-sex divorce

Summary: With the U.S. Supreme Courts same-sex marriage ruling from months ago, divorce cases sitting in appeals from before the ruling will now be allowed to progress.

Mississippi had to turn to their Supreme Court to determine if the divorce between same-sex couples is legal. They cited the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling Obergefell v. Hodges earlier this year in legalizing same-sex marriage.


Two of the justices believe that states can disregard the Obergefell v. Hodges ruling if the courts policy opposes the interpretation of the law. Five justices agreed with the ruling from the Supreme Court, citing that same-sex divorce is legal and this should be recognized.

A dissenting vote by Jess Dickinson points to the question of whether the U.S. Supreme Court overreached its authority by ruling in favor of same-sex marriages. Several states, including Mississippi, had declared same-sex marriage as unconstitutional until the ruling was made. State Attorney General Jim Hood told the court the Supreme Court’s ruling stands and makes the ban unconstitutional.

Dickinson wrote in his dissenting vote, “And while it is true that the Supremacy Clause of the United States Constitution obligates state courts to follow the United States Supreme Court’s constitutional interpretations, even when they disagree with those interpretations, there is substantial support from legal scholars that state courts are not required to recognize as legitimate legal authority a Supreme Court decision that is no way a constitutional interpretation, but rather is a legislative act by a judicial body that is – as Chief Justice Roberts put it – a decision that ‘has no basis in the Constitution or (United States Supreme Court) precedent.’”

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The case that brought this issue to the Mississippi Supreme Court was from 2013 when same-sex marriage was banned in the state. DeSoto County member Lauren Beth Czekala-Chatham wished to divorce her wife that she married in California but was not allowed. Her wife now lives in Arkansas. Their divorce should now be quickly finalized.





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