ALBANY, N.Y. — Although the New York Court of Appeals declined to hear an appeal from an appellate court’s decision holding that municipalities must recognize foreign same-sex “marriages” in the Empire State, Alliance Defense Fund attorneys point out that the final word has not yet been heard on the issue. The court reasoned that it could not hear the case because the lower court’s decision had yet to “finally determine the action.” Once that occurs, the Court of Appeals may again be asked to consider the case.
“The government should promote and encourage strong families. New York’s marriage laws do that; recognizing same-sex ‘marriages’ performed in foreign countries does not,” said ADF Senior Legal Counsel Brian Raum. “Foreign marriage laws should never trump New York’s public policy on marriage, which does not recognize unions between members of the same sex. Marriage is under attack because certain special interest groups are trying to reduce it to little more than a benefits system for emotionally attached couples without regard for the ramifications.”
The issue of whether the state should recognize foreign same-sex “marriages” is also being addressed by other New York courts. ADF attorneys are engaged in several other appeals involving the extension of taxpayer-funded benefits normally reserved for married couples to state employees involved in same-sex “marriages” that are otherwise illegal in New York.
“Any of these cases may find their way to New York’s high court. Until that happens, the issue will not be definitely resolved,” Raum explained. “These lawsuits are in different appellate divisions than the one declined by the New York high court Tuesday; therefore, they are not bound by that poorly reasoned appellate decision.
A copy of the friend-of-the-court brief ADF attorneys filed March 17 in the New York Court of Appeals, the state’s highest court, in Martinez v. County of Monroe is available here.
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