Saturday, August 1, 2015

Same-sex couple in Pa. declared spouses even though one partner died before legalization

From Pennsylvania-

A judge has recognized a 2001 same-sex union as a common-law marriage in Pennsylvania even though one partner died before gay marriage became legal, a ruling that has family lawyers across the state buzzing about the potential implications.

Sabrina Maurer's case involves her fight over death benefits and inheritance taxes - as well as access to their safety deposit box - after the 2013 death of Kim Underwood.

Bucks County Judge C. Theodore Fritsch Jr. found that the women retroactively qualify as common-law spouses because of their 2001 church union.

Underwood died a year before a federal judge ordered Pennsylvania to conduct same-sex marriages and recognize those performed earlier. Fritsch's ruling Wednesday appears to extend that decision to include earlier common-law unions, at least in Bucks County.

More here-

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