The Houston Family Law Blog

Is Marriage Really Legal in Texas?

| No TrackBacks

Can couples legally marry in the state of Texas? While wedding ceremonies occur everyday, a "massive mistake" in a 22-word clause of the 2005 constitutional amendment designed to ban gay marriages draws questions for some about the validity of all marriages, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports.

The clause of question declares, "This state or a political subdivision of this state may not create or recognize any legal status identical or similar to marriage." But some Texas family law attorneys are arguing that a marriage ceremony is identical to marriage. So wouldn't that make all forms of marriage illegal?

Houston lawyer and former attorney general candidate Barbara Ann Radnofsky certainly seems to think so. She believes that another constitutional amendment should be put in place in order to reverse the problem.

"You do not have to have a fancy law degree to read this and understand what it plainly says," Ms. Radnofsky said in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. She believes that the poor wording of the law can open up doors for legal claims involving spousal rights, insurance claims, inheritance, and other marriage related issues.

News reports say that the language of the clause was designed to ban civil unions and domestic partnerships as part of the state's ban on gay marriage.

Other legal experts say the wording of the clause is not a big issue. Kelly Shackelford, president of the Liberty Legal Institute in Plano, told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram that any potential lawsuit challenging the clause would have "about one chance in a trillion" of being successful.

Related Resources:

  • Common Law Marriage (FindLaw)
  • Did Texas Accidentally Ban Marriage (FindLaw's Law and Daily Life Blog)
  • Texas family law attorneys directory (FindLaw)

No TrackBacks

TrackBack URL: