Marriage/Partner Recognition


Marriage/Partner Recognition

Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) families deserve the same respect, recognition and protection as all other families. Family recognition and the many rights and protections it provides is essential to the well-being of our families.

Notable inroads have been made in the realm of marriage equality. Currently 14 states Massachusetts, Iowa, Vermont, Connecticut, New Hampshire, New York, Maine, Maryland, Washington, Delaware, Rhode Island, Minnesota, California and New Jersy and the District of Columbia grant the freedom to marry to same-sex couples. This continues to be a hot-button issue across the nation as more states consider granting this fundamental freedom. You can view a map of relationship recognition laws here.

The Supreme Court heard oral arguments on two marriage equality cases on March 26 and 27, 2013. Hollingsworth v. Perry is the Proposition 8 case and United States v. Windsor challenges the constitutionality of the so-called “Defense of Marriage Act” (DOMA).

Decisions were announced on June 26, 2013. Read the Task Force's response to the decision to strike down DOMA and remand the Proposition 8 case.

You can also read the "After DOMA: What it means for you" fact sheet series which provides guidance to same-sex couples and their families as they navigate accessing federal rights, benefits and protections.

Election 2012 saw stunning results for LGBT equality, including the passage of the first-ever marriage equality measures by popular vote. Maine passed Question 1, the first-ever proactive marriage equality ballot measure, with voters approving it 53 percent to 47 percent. In Maryland, voters passed Question 6, which affirmed a marriage equality law passed earlier this year in the Free State. The vote was 52 percent to 48 percent. In Minnesota, voters rejected a constitutional amendment that sought to block same-sex couples from marrying. In Washington state, voters approved Referendum 74, affirming the marriage equality law in that state. Read our statements on each state win here: Maine, Maryland, Minnesota and Washington state.