Mississippi Divorce Attorney Discusses Same-Sex Divorce

As you know, Mississippi does not allow same-sex marriages. A case that is currently before the Mississippi Supreme Court involves a same-sex couple, but it is not a same-sex marriage case. The women are already married, and they are seeking a divorce.

On one side of the matter are lawyers arguing in favor of the court granting the divorce, stating that it is possible for the court to do so without overturning the state’s prohibition on same-sex marriages. On the other side of the matter, the attorney general’s office is arguing that the court cannot grant a divorce to the women because their California marriage is void in Mississippi. The court could make a decision based upon the information that is being presented to it, but it could also wait for the United States Supreme Court to make a decision on a case that is on its docket, a case which could result in the legalization of same-sex marriages nationwide.

The case that is currently before the Mississippi Supreme Court is interesting not only because it involves same-sex divorce in a state that does not recognize same-sex marriage, but also because of the reasoning that is occurring on both sides of the issue. For example, Presiding Justice Jess Dickinson seemed to express the notion that granting a divorce to a same-sex couple would be consistent with Mississippi’s ban on same-sex marriages because the divorce would bring a same-sex marriage to an end. The attorney general’s office disagrees, though, stating the state must first recognize the marriage before it can grant a divorce, and that is currently illegal. Interestingly enough, Associate Justice Randy Pierce pointed out that Mississippi does grant divorces to other types of couples who aren’t allowed to marry in Mississippi but who have married in some other state, such as first cousins.

Until the Mississippi Supreme Court decides what position it will take on the issue of same-sex divorce, the women whose case is before the court remain married. This is unfortunate, because when people want to be divorced, they want to be able to live a separate life that does not involve their spouse. When couples must remain married because the state will not grant them a divorce, they can go their separate ways in some regards, but not in others. For example, they must continue to file taxes and do other things that they have been doing as a married couple together. This forced togetherness, even if it involves only a handful of issues, may serve to set up situations where people are unable to move forward in their separate lives.

If you are thinking of filing for divorce in Mississippi, it is important that you do so with the help of an experienced and dedicated Mississippi Family Law Attorney. Consulting with a Mississippi Divorce Attorney can help you to understand the divorce process and think through all of the short and long term consequences for you and your family of structuring your divorce in any particular way. To learn more, please call Mississippi Divorce Attorney Matthew S. Poole today, at (601) 573-7429.

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Mississippi Divorce Attorney Discusses Same-Sex Divorce
Mississippi Divorce Attorney discusses the implications and legalities of same sex divorce matters.