GayLawNews™

September 2014

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30 September 2014

California Governor Signs Historic Bill for LGBT Business Owners into Law

UNITED STATES, California: On 26 September 2014, Governor Jerry Brown signed Assembly Bill 1678: Women, minority, disabled veteran, and LGBT business enterprise procurement' into law effective 01 January 2015 and requiring the Public Utilities Commission to extend procurement contract opportunities to certified LGBT-owned business enterprises.

Supreme Court discusses marriage

UNITED STATES, Washington DC: On 29 September 2014, the nine justices of the US Supreme Court likely met to discuss whether they should take up any or all of the seven petitions before the Court from Indiana, Oklahoma, Utah, Virginia and Wisconsin on the issue of marriage equality. (The only public word from the Court after the conference will be its order list. The list could be released earlier but likely will issue on 06 October).

Louisiana's gay marriage ruling stayed pending appeal

UNITED STATES, Louisiana: On 25 September 2014, Judge Edward D Rubin granted a suspensive appeal on the motion of the State Attorney General, ordering a stay of his 22 September order 'In Re Costanza and Brewer' and that the appeal be filed by 25 October in the Louisiana Supreme Court.
• Motion and Order: Angela Marie Costanzo and Chasity Shanelle Brewer v. James D Caldwell No. A-20130052 D2 PDF 124.37kb, 25 SEP 14

29 September 2014

Court overturns ruling recognising one same-sex marriage

ITALY: On 29 September 2014, the Court of Appeal in Florence overturned the June ruling of Judge Paolo Cesare Otatti ordering Grosseto in Tuscany to recognise married couples and the union of Joseph Chigiotti and Stefano Bucci because the case was filed against the County instead of the city's Mayor and remanded the matter back to the District Court of Grosseto.

27 September 2014

California Governor Brown Signs Bill to Ban Use of “Transgender Panic” Defenses in Criminal Trials

UNITED STATES, California: On 27 September 2014, Governor Jerry Brown signed the “Voluntary Manslaughter” (Bill AB 2501) into Californian law, prohibiting the use of “gay panic” and “transgender panic” defenses to reduce murder charges to manslaughter in criminal trials, becoming the first State to do so.

100 lashes for extramarital and gay sex in Aceh

INDONESIA, Aceh: On 27 September 2014, the Aceh provincial parliament approved a law that regulates affairs such as extramarital and homosexual sex, rape, sexual harassment, alcohol, gambling and mixing between unmarried men and women. People caught having pre-marital, extra-marital or homosexual sex face up to 100 lashes of the cane, or a fine of one kilogram of gold, or 100 months in prison.

26 September 2014

California governor signs bill allowing transgender status on death certificates

UNITED STATES, California: On 26 September 2014, Governor Jerry Brown announced that he had signed AB1577, the “Respect After Death Act” that comes into effect in 01 July 2015 and requires an official filling out a death certificate to have regard to evidence that the deceased person had changed gender identity, including health records showing treatment for gender transition, court approval for a name change, an advanced healthcare directive or other documents.

City recognizes same-sex spouses in its retirement plans

UNITED STATES, Missouri: On 15 September 2014, the Columbia City Council approved changes to the city's 401(a) defined contribution plans, 457 deferred compensation plans and the police and fire pension plans, enabling the spouses of employees in same-sex marriages to benefit in retirement plans. Changes made in the 457 and the Police and Fire Pension plans were effective Sept. 16. Revisions to the 401(a) Plan will be effective next Wednesday.

Kazakhstan: Court fines ad company over gay kiss poster

KAZAKHSTAN: On 24 September 2014, a court in Almaty found advertising agency Havas Worldwide Kazakhstan guilty of advertising 'banned goods and services', imposing a $1700 fine for producing a poster for the “Studio 69” gay bar and club featuring 19th century cultural figures Kazakh composer Kurmangazy Sagyrbayuly and Russian poet Anexander Pushkin kissing.

UN Human Rights Council approves resolution supporting LGBT rights

UNITED NATIONS: On 26 September 2014, the United Nations Human Rights Council approved a resolution 25-14 condemning discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, asking the UN Office of the High Commissioner of Human Rights to gather and publish information on how best to overcome discrimination and violence.
• Draft Resolution: Human rights, sexual orientation and gender identity A/HRC/27/L.27/Rev.1 Word 24 SEP 14

25 September 2014

Russia's Constitutional Court upholds "homosexual propaganda" ban

RUSSIA: On 25 July 2014, the Constitutional Court reportedly upheld the law that bans 'propaganda of non-traditional sexual relations' among minors as constitutional whilst stating 'The contested provisions [of the Russian legislation] are not intended to ban homosexuality as is, and cannot be viewed as allowing to curb the rights of citizens based on their sexual orientation. They also do not imply a ban on any information concerning unorthodox sexual relations'.

23 September 2014

French court extends adoption rights to married, lesbian couples

FRANCE: On 23 September 2014, the Cour de Cassation ruled that as a consequence of the legalization of same-sex marriage in 2013, married lesbian couples are allowed to adopt their spouse's child born through in vitro fertilization or other medically assisted reproduction outside of France.
• Opinion: Application No. 1470006 No. 15011 (in French), 22 SEP 14

Chad becomes 37th African state to seek ban on homosexuality

CHAD: On 23 September 2014, it was reported that government ministers voted to make same-sex relations a crime punishable by up to 20 years in prison. The decision, is yet to be ratified by the country's president.

22 September 2014

Lafayette judge rules Louisiana same-sex marriage ban is unconstitutional

UNITED STATES, Louisiana: On 22 September 2014, District Judge Edward Rubin in the 15th Judicial District Court ruled “In Re Costanza and Brewer” that the ban on same-sex marriage in Louisiana is unconstitutional.
• Minute Entry Ruling: Angela Marie Costanzo and Chasity Shanelle Brewer v. James D Caldwell No. 2013-0052 D2 PDF 26.07MB, 22 SEP 14

19 September 2014

Tenth Circuit puts Colorado marriage case on hold

UNITED STATES, Colorado: On 18 September 2014, the US Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit ordered the appeal in the Catherine Burns, et al., v. John Suthers, et al. case be abated requiring the parties to notify within 10 days of a decision on the petitions pending before the US Supreme Court and file status reports within 30 days if no decision is issued by that time.
• Order: Catherine Burns, et al., v. John Suthers, et al. No. 14-1283 PDF 48.68kb, 18 SEP 14

18 September 2014

West Virginia Federal Judge Delays Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

UNITED STATES, West Virginia: On 16 September 2014, US District Judge Robert Chambers in Huntington ordered the Casie Jo McGee and Sarah Elizabeth Adkins, et al., v. Karen S Cole, et al. case be stayed pending a decision of the US Supreme Court.
• Order: Casie Jo McGee and Sarah Elizabeth Adkins, et al., v. Karen S Cole, et al. No. 3:13-24068 PDF 60.16kb, 16 SEP 14

Copyright and Marriage Equality Act Introduced to Protect Same-Sex Couples

UNITED STATES: On 18 September 2014, Representatives Derek Kilmer (D-WA), Jared Polis (D-CO) and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) introduced the Copyright and Marriage Equality Act, which would amend language in the Copyright Act that is currently preventing some married same-sex couples from receiving inheritance rights to the copyrights held by a deceased spouse. Some agencies - including the Copyright Office, the Social Security Administration, and the Department of Veterans Affairs - currently do not recognize same-sex couples living in states without marriage equality.

17 September 2014

Norfolk Island could legalise same-sex marriage by the end of 2014

NORFOLK ISLAND: On 17 September 2014, a notice of intention to introduce same-sex marriage legislation was tabled (by Assembly member Hayden Evans) but there will not be a vote until next month (15 October) at the earliest.

Judge Restores Part of Indiana Gay Marriage Suit

UNITED STATES, Indiana: On 12 September 2014, Judge US District Judge Richard Young reinstated four same-sex couples' claim that Indiana's refusal to recognize out-of-state gay marriages is unconstitutional but not that part of the lawsuit that challenged the general constitutionality of the ban.
• Entry on Plaintiffs' Motion to Reconsider: Melissa Love, et al. v. Michael Richard Pence No. 4:14-cv-00015-RLY-TAB PDF 63.24kb, 16 SEP 14

15 September 2014

Indiana court stays ruling on same-sex marriage

UNITED STATES, Indiana, Wisconsin:On 15 September 2014, the US Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit, stayed its 04 September its ruling finding bans against same-sex marriage unconstitutional pending disposition by the US Supreme Court.
• Order: Marilyn Rae Basking, et al., v. Penny Bogan, et al., Virginia Wolf, et al., v. Scott Walker, et al. Nos. 14-2386, 14-2387, 14-2388, 14-2526 PDF 1.27MB, 15 SEP 14

13 September 2014

Brazilian baby registered with three parents

BRAZIL, Rio Grande do Sol: On 11 September 2014, Judge Rafael Pagnon Cunha in the Santa Maria Forum permitted a baby's birth certificate to be registered with two mothers (Fernanda Batagli Kropenscki, 26, and Santiago Mariani Guedes, 27) and a father (Luis Guilherme Barbosa Canfield, 27).

12 September 2014

Man wins fight to get same-sex union recognized

UNITED STATES, Arizona: On 12 September 2014, US District Judge John Sedwick allowed Fred McQuire to be listed on his deceased spouse's death certificate, perhaps qualifying him to receive Social Security and veteran benefits. Fred McQuire and George Martinez were married in California.
• Order and Opinion: Nelda Majors, et al. v. Michael K Jeanes et al. No. 2:14-cv-00518 JWS PDF 111.18kb, 12 SEP 14

Indiana agrees to recognize 2nd same-sex marriage

UNITED STATES, Indiana: On 11 September 2014, Judge Joseph Van Bokkelen in the US District Court ordered that the State recognise the out-of-state marriage of Veronica Romero and Mayra Yvette Rivera and if either of them should die, the Department of Health will issue a death certificate recording the deceased Plaintiff's status as “married” and list the other adult Plaintiff as the “surviving spouse”.
• Opinion and Order: Veronica Romero, et al. v. Michael A Brown, et al. No. 2:14-cv-325-JVB-PRC PDF 57.53kb, 11 SEP 14
• Stipulation: Veronica Romero, et al. v. Michael A Brown, et al. No. 2:14-cv-325-JVB-PRC PDF 88.58kb, 10 SEP 14

11 September 2014

Appeals Court Upholds New Jersey Ban on 'Ex-Gay' Therapy

UNITED STATES, New Jersey: On 11 September 2014, the US Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit upheld a District Court ruling that banning the use of “sexual orientation change efforts” therapy on minors is appropriate, finding that the law is an appropriate regulation of mental health professionals and does not interfere with freedom of speech or religious expression.
• Opinion: Tara King, Et al. v. Governor of the State of New Jersey, et al. No. 13-4429 PDF 360.52kb, 11 SEP 14

Judges grant adoptions by same-sex couples

UNITED STATES, Wisconsin: On 10 September 2014, Dane County Circuit Court Judge Shelley Gaylord ruled that the marriage of a lesbian couple Teresa Riley and Kat Riley who wed in Iowa was constitutionally valid and that such marriages must be recognized under state adoption laws, approving the couple's adoption of their two children. On 13 August 2014, Judge Julie Genovese granted Sarah Davis and Heather Schaller of Madison what may have been the first adoption by a same-sex married couple in Dane County, and possibly in the state.

09 September 2014

Broward Judge Vacates Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

UNITED STATES, Florida: On 09 September 2014, it was reported that Broward County Judge Dale Cohen vacated his decision that found Florida's gay-marriage ban was unconstitutional in the Heather Brassner v. Megan Lade divorce case saying, “ the Petitioner, Heather Brassner, has failed to comply with [state law] by failing to [give] notice [to] the Office of the Attorney General of these proceedings by either registered or certified mail”. Judge Cohen canceled a hearing to finalize the dissolution that was originally set for Wednesday, but said the parties can reschedule a hearing in the case.

08 September 2014

City to become first in Mississippi to grant same-sex spouse benefits - report

UNITED STATES, Mississippi: On 05 September 2014, the City of Starkville was reported to have announced that benefits including health insurance, will be extended to same-sex partners of its employees.

Gambia passes bill imposing life in prison for some homosexual acts

GAMBIA: In August 2014, the National Assembly reportedly passed a Bill amending the criminal code imposing life sentences for “aggravated homosexuality”, to include when the suspect engages in homosexual acts with someone who is under 18, disabled or has been drugged. The term also applies when the suspect is the parent or guardian of the other person or is “in authority over” him or her. The bill now awaits approval by President Yahya Jammeh

06 September 2014

Winston-Salem opens benefits to same-sex couples

UNITED STATES, North Carolina: On 28 August 2014, Winston-Salem reportedly advised that the city would recognise marriage licenses from any state or US jurisdiction for employee benefits, setting up an enrollment period that ends 31 October for all qualified employees.

05 September 2014

Florida Supreme Court declines to hear same-sex marriage case

UNITED STATES, Florida: On 05 September 2014, the Florida Supreme Court declined to hear the Mariama Monique Shaw v. Keiba Lynn Shaw divorce case No. 2D14-2384 referred directly from the Second District Court of Appeals without a hearing and remanded the case back to the Court of Appeals.
• Disposition Order: Mariama Monique Shaw v. Keiba Lynn Shaw SC14-1664 PDF 25.84kb, 05 SEP 14
• Certification of Order Requiring Immediate Resolution by the Supreme Court: Mariama Monique Shaw v. Keiba Lynn Shaw No. 2D14-2384 PDF 77.92kb, 27 AUG 14

04 September 2014

Seventh Circuit rules marriage bans in Indiana and Wisconsin are unconstitutional

UNITED STATES, Indiana, Wisconsin: On 04 September 2014, the the Seventh Court of Appeals unanimously upheld lower court rulings finding bans against same-sex marriage unconstitutional." alt="News item summary" /> US (IN), (WI) 04 SEP
• Opinion: Baskin, et al. v. Bogan. et al. and Wolf, et al. v. Walker, et al. Nos. 14-2386 to 14-2388, 14-2526 PDF 294.20kb, 04 SEP 14

03 September 2014

Louisiana gay marriage ban upheld by federal judge

UNITED STATES, Louisiana: On 03 September 2014, US District Judge Martin Feldman in the US District Court, Eastern District of Louisiana upheld Louisiana's ban on gay marriage and refusal to recognise gay marriages legally performed in other states. The plaintiffs are expected to appeal the ruling to the 5th US Circuit Court of Appeal.
• Opinion and reasons: Jonathan P Robicheaux, et al. v. James D. Caldwell, et al. Nos. 13-5090, 14-97, 14-327 PDF 111.23kb, 03 SEP 14

02 September 2014

Mexico's Northern State Approves Same Sex Marriage

MEXICO, Coahuila: On 01 September 2014, the Congress of Coahuila became the second state to approve (19-3) same sex marriages, modifying more than 40 articles of the State's Civil Law to give all the rights and obligations of a heterosexual marriage to homosexual couples, effective as early as next week.

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