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Friday, March 07, 2014

Law - "Can Indiana same-sex couples marry in Illinois?"

The answer seems to be, "Yes, but ...".

As reported in this Feb. 21st ILB post, although the new Illinois statute legalizing same-sex marriage does not take effect until June 1st, in a successful class-action suit relating to Cook County a federal judge has ruled that same-sex marriage may proceed immediately in Cook County, Illinois.

A column called "Ask Gerry" in the Chicago Phoenix, written March 5th by Gerald Farinas, takes an in-depth look at whether Indiana same-sex couples may marry in Illinois. The answer is comprehensive and links to other useful information, such as a 2-page FAQ from the Cook County Clerk.

But, although the Cook County FAQ says:

If we live in a different state, can we get a marriage license in Cook County?
Yes, even if same-sex marriage is not legal in your state. Marriage licenses are issued in the county where the ceremony will occur, so you must get married in Cook County if you get your license here.
That may not be enough. As the Phoenix column points out (in a section perhaps added later, after several Hoosiers submitted comments), Illinois statute still provides:
(750 ILCS 5/217) (from Ch. 40, par. 217)
Sec. 217. Marriage by Non-residents - When Void.) No marriage shall be contracted in this state by a party residing and intending to continue to reside in another state or jurisdiction if such marriage would be void if contracted in such other state or jurisdiction and every marriage celebrated in this state in violation of this provision shall be null and void.(Source: P.A. 80-923.)
In other words, as "Ask Gerry" notes:
The obtaining of a marriage license, however, does not mean that the couples’ home state will acknowledge and validate it as legal. It would take legislation or a federal court order in Indiana to make that change. * * *

[E]ven within the State of Illinois, that marriage may not be legal.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on March 7, 2014 08:35 AM
Posted to General Law Related