Until recently same sex marriages were not recognized. As such, the history of same sex marriages is very short. The first lawsuit asking for recognition of a same sex union was filed in 1971. Under federal law, marriage is a union between a man and a woman. However for all legal purposes, marriage is regulated by state law. This section provides information about the Defense of Marriage Act – a federal statute, the state laws on marriage, history of same sex marriages, changes to the law and precedents affecting same sex marriages, comparison of same sex marriages and civil unions, and much more. Click on the links to know more.
- Same-Sex Marriage, Civil Unions, and Domestic Parnerships : Read about the different domestic arrangements available to same-sex couples.
- Same-Sex Marriage Pros and Cons : This article explains how entering into marriage can help or hurt your chances of adopting and raising children, your tax status, or your ability to own and retain property in your name.
- A Historical Introduction : This article will give you the background information you need to follow today’s news.
- The Defense of Marriage Act : DOMA was passed in1996 to deny all benefits and recognition to same-sex couples. But in 2013, the Supreme Court ruled it unconstitutional under the equal protection clause in U.S. v. Windsor.
- States That Allow Same-Sex Marriage : Find out which states allow same sex couples to marry, and which do not, by reading this article.
- Recent Developments : Laws about same-sex marriage keep changing. Here’s the play-by-play history of which states started allowing same sex marriage, including the important votes, court decisions, and ballot initiatives.