Marriage

Links To Motions & Court Orders

UPDATES ON FLORIDA MARRIAGE RULINGS

MOST RECENT NEWS: The United States Supreme Court ruled in favor of the freedom to marry nationwide on June 26, 2015! 


NATIONWIDE: U.S. SUPREME COURT

6/26/2015 - The United States Supreme Court ruled in favor of the freedom to marry nationwide on June 26, 2015. 

4/28/2015 - The United States Supreme Court held oral arguments on the freedom to marry for all Americans. Court Case: Obergefell v. Hodges

12/23/2014 - On January 9, the United States Supreme Court will consider petitions on the freedom to marry from 5 marriage states - Tennessee, Louisiana, Ohio, Michigan, and Kentucky - who are seeking certiorari this term. After the conference, the Supreme Court will announce if it has agreed to hear oral arguments and likely offer a judgement. Read more here: http://bit.ly/1AfTeZH

10/6/2014 - This morning the Court issued additional orders from its September 29 Conference. Most notably, the Court denied review of all seven of the petitions arising from challenges to state bans on same-sex marriage. This means that the lower-court decisions striking down bans in Indiana, Wisconsin, Utah, Oklahoma, and Virginia should go into effect shortly, clearing the way for same-sex marriages in those states and any other state with similar bans in those circuits.


CASE: STATEWIDE - Brenner v. Scott

1/1/2015 - Judge Hinkle confirmed his marriage ruling - clarifying that clerks in ALL Florida counties are bound by the U.S. Constitution to start issuing marriage licenses starting on January 6. Read the order here: http://bit.ly/1xjQd9A

12/29/2014 - Secretary of the Florida Department of Management Services's Responds to Clerk's Motion to Clarify Judge Hinkle's Ruling. Read the statement here: http://bit.ly/1EF2bzG

12/29/2014 - Grimsley Plaintiffs' file a response to Clerk's motion for clarification on issuing marriage licenses. Read the statement here: http://bit.ly/1zNTkJ9

12/29/2014 - Brenner Plaintiffs' file a response to Clerk's motion for clarification on issuing marriage licenses. Read the statement here: http://bit.ly/1CRwi5g

12/24/2014 - Judge Hinkle asks both parties involved in the federal marriage case to state their positions on the issuing of marriage licenses by clerks. The deadline to submit was midnight December 29th. Read more here: http://bit.ly/1zrZPMB

12/22/2014 - In more than 25 unique amicus briefs that have been or will be submitted week to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit, scores of first responders, law enforcement officials, states, cities, faith leaders and businesses urge the court to end Florida’s ban on marriage for same-sex couples. See the briefs here: http://bit.ly/1t7kIjw

12/19/2014 - The U.S. Supreme Court denied the State of Florida's request to extend the stay on Federal Judge Hinkle's marriage ruling! Read the order here: http://www.eqfl.org/SCOTUSmarriage

12/15/2014 - The State of Florida asks the U.S. Supreme Court to extend the stay on Judge Hinkle's ruling. Read the request here: http://www.eqfl.org/marriagenews3

12/3/2014 - The 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals denied a request by the State of Florida to extend the stay on Federal Judge Hinkle's marriage ruling. The stay is set to expire end of day January 5th, meaning marriage is coming to Florida January 6, 2015! Read the order here: http://www.eqfl.org/marriagevictory

10/24/2014 - The State of Florida files a motion requesting an extension on Judge Hinkle's stay. To read the motion, click here. 

10/9/2014 - The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit has granted the Governor Scott's and Attorney General Bondi's motion to extend the deadline of the appellant briefs until AFTER Election Day. Deadline is now November 14. To read the court's order, click here. 

10/7/2014 - The ACLU files a motion to immediately lift Judge Hinkle's stay. Click here to read the motion.

9/4/2014 - Three defendents in the case filed an appeal to the United States Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit. To read the motion, click here.

8/28/2014 - The 3rd District Court of Appeal just granted our request to combine the Monroe and Miami-Dade marriage cases as they move to a higher court - And has denied Attorney General Bondi's attempt to stall the progress of marriage cases until the U.S. Supreme Court rules on the freedom to marry.

8/21/2014 - To read Judge Hinkle's marriage ruling, click here.

8/21/2014 - Moments ago, U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkle ruled that Florida's discriminatory state ban excluding same-sex couples from the freedom to marry is unconstitutional. The ruling has already been stayed, meaning that any decision won't go into effect immediately. Read more!


CASE: KEY WEST - Huntsman v. Heavilin

RULING: On July 17, 2014 Judge Garcia found Florida's ban on marriage to be unconstitutional. This applies to the Clerk in Monroe County. Marriage licenses can be given out in Monroe County but not until July 22nd. You do not need to be a resident of Monroe County to get a license.

This ruling does not affect same-sex out-of-state marriages. They are still unrecognized by the state.

However we do not know at this time, if the state will recognize Monroe County licenses outside of Monroe County.

Read our statement on the ruling here.

Does this ruling mean same-sex couples can now get married anywhere in Florida?

Unfortunately, no.   Although Judge Garcia ruled that beginning on Tuesday, July 22nd, same sex couples could travel from anywhere to Monroe County and receive a marriage license, because Attorney General Pam Bondi has appealed the ruling it is automatically stayed until it is heard by the 3rd District Court of Appeals.  This means marriages are on hold pending appeal. On a positive note, because the case has been appealed to a district court, the final ruling in this case will now be binding statewide.  

How soon will the appeals court rule?  
It is very difficult to predict how quickly an appeal will be decided, but the next ruling in this case is likely several months away.  

Does this decision impact same sex marriages performed in other states or jurisdictions?

No.  Judge Garcia ruled that because no plaintiffs in this case had been married elsewhere, couples married elsewhere did not have standing.   A ruling is expected soon in a federal case seeking to have same-sex marriages performed in other states recognized in Florida.

UPDATES:

7/24/2014 - Equality Florida Institute and same-sex couples delivered 7,000 petitions to Attorney General Pam Bondi urging her to drop the appeal of the historic marriage ruling.

7/23/2014 - Order to Lift Stay by the 3rd District Court of Appeal - DENIED

7/23/214 - Motion to Vacate Stay to the Disctrict Circuit Court of Appeals

7/21/214 - Order to Emergency Lift Stay - DENIED

7/21/214 - MOTION TO LIFT STAY filed Monroe County Court

7/17/2014 - AG Bondi just filed an Appeal which automatically results in a stay of the decision. No marriages just yet.


CASE: MIAMI-DADE  Pareto v Ruvin

RULING: On July 25, 2014 Judge Zabel has found Florida's ban on marriage to be unconstitutional. There is an immediate stay on the ruling, which means no marriage licenses will be given out just yet. 

Read our statement on the ruling by clicking here

LINKS: 

  1. Marriage FAQ
  2. Day of Decision Gatherings for July 17 
  3. A Legal Update on Florida Marriage Lawsuits
  4. Transcripts for Miami Marriage Hearing on July 2 

UPDATES:

12/29/2014 - Judge Zabel set a hearing for Monday, January 5th to discuss lifting her stay on the Miami-Dade marriage case. Read more here: http://bit.ly/1D47ape

10/13/2014 - Attorney General Pam Bondi filed a Supplemental Response in Support of Pass-Through Certification, asking the Third District Court of Appeal to “pass through” jurisdiction and allow two same-sex marriage cases to be heard by the Florida Supreme Court. Click here to read the motion.

7/25/2014 - Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi filed an appeal to the Miami-Dade County marriage decision.

7/25/2014 - Miami-Dade County Judge Zabel's ruling on the marriage case.


CASE: PALM BEACH - In Re Bangor Estate

8/5/2014 - Palm Beach County Circuit Court Judge Diana Lewis rules that Florida's ban on marriage for same-sex couples is unconstitutional. The ruling is limited to the facts of this case - meaning it only applies to this plaintiff or for these specific circumstances. No order for clerks to issue licenses. No stay issued. To read the order, click here.


CASE: BROWARD - Brassner v. Lade

12/17/2014 - Broward Circuit Judge Dale Cohen has granted a divorce between Heather Brassner and Megan Lade, who were united in a 2002 Civil Union in Vermont, making them the second same-sex couple to be recognized as legally married by the State of Florida. Read more here: http://www.eqfl.org/marriagenews4

12/8/2014 - Broward Circuit Judge Dale Cohen ruled Florida's ban on marriage for same-sex couples is unconstitutional...again! There is no stay in place, but we are waiting for the Final Judgment of Dissolution by the Judge. Read Judge Cohen's order here.

10/22/2014 - Attorney General Pam Bondi filed a Memorandum of Law in Opposition. The memorandum claims the Judge should not grant Heather Brassner a divorce. To read the memorandum, click here. 

9/12/2014 - Attorney General Pam Bondi has filed a motion to intervene in the Broward County marriage case with Judge Cohen to defend Florida's ban on marriage. To read the motion, click here.

8/4/2014 - Broward County Judge's Marriage Ruling/Opinion - click here.

8/4/2014 - Broward Circuit Judge Dale Cohen struck down Florida’s marriage ban in Broward County and ruled the state must recognize legal out-of-state marriages. This marks the third time in the past few weeks that a Republican-appointed judge in Florida has ruled on the side of marriage equality. The judge issued an immediate stay on the ruling pending appeal by the state. To read more, click here.

We expect to hear a ruling Monday, August 4 on the case of lesbian, Heather Brassner who is legally stuck in a 2002 Vermont civil union because Florida is constitutionally banned from recognizing the women’s relationship, and therefore won't grant her a divorce. Learn more about this case.