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Conflict Between Vermont Courts and Virginia Courts in Dispute Over Lesbian's Parental Rights:

The Vermont Supreme Court just issued its opinion in Miller-Jenkins v. Miller-Jenkins; here's a brief summary of the facts:

Lisa and Janet lived together in Virginia for several years in the late 1990's. In December 2000, the parties traveled to Vermont and entered into a civil union. In 2001, while Lisa and Janet were still a couple, Lisa began to receive artificial insemination from sperm provided by an anonymous donor. Janet participated in the decision that Lisa become impregnated and helped select the anonymous donor. In April 2002, Lisa gave birth to IMJ, with Janet present in the delivery room. Lisa, Janet, and IMJ lived in Virginia until IMJ was approximately four months old and then moved together to Vermont around August of 2002. The parties lived together with IMJ in Vermont until the fall of 2003, when they decided to separate. After the separation, in September 2003, Lisa moved to Virginia with IMJ.

On November 24, 2003, Lisa filed a petition to dissolve the civil union in the Vermont family court in Rutland. In her complaint, Lisa listed IMJ as the "biological or adoptive child[]of the civil union." Lisa requested that the court award her custodial rights and award Janet parent-child contact. The family court ... on June 17, 2004 ... awarded Lisa temporary legal and physical responsibility for IMJ, and awarded Janet [visitation and a right to daily telephone contact] ....

Lisa eventually started denying Janet her visitation and contact rights, and the Virginia court in which Lisa filed an action to establish IMJ's parentage backed her up, holding that "any claims of Janet to parental status were 'based on rights under Vermont's civil union laws that are null and void under Va. Code § 20-45.3,'" that Lisa was the "sole biological and natural parent," and that Janet had no "claims of parentage or visitation rights over" IMJ. (That order is being appealed in Virginia.) The Vermont court, on the other hand, found Lisa guilty of contempt of court for violating the Vermont order, and refused to adhere to the Virginia order (which was issued after the initial Vermont order).

I'm not a family law maven, but here's my sense of the matter.

First, despite how Lisa's lawyers (Liberty Counsel) are characterizing the case, this is not primarily a case about civil unions. Child custody cases often arise in divorces (or, where civil unions are available, in civil union dissolutions), but they can arise even if the parties aren't married. The relevant federal statute, the Parental Kindapping Prevention Act, 28 U.S.C. § 1738A (which the Vermont court calls, in a possibly amusing mistake, the Parental Kidnapping Protection Act), requires courts to adhere to preexisting custody awards generally, not just ones that follow the dissolution of a marriage. The Act requires each state to "enforce according to its terms" out-of-state custody orders if, among other things:

(1) [the original] court has jurisdiction under the law of [the court's] State; and
(2) ... (A) such State
(i) is the home State of the child on the date of the commencement of the proceeding, or
(ii) had been the child’s home State within six months before the date of the commencement of the proceeding and the child is absent from such State because of his removal or retention by a contestant or for other reasons, and a contestant continues to live in such State;
And if this provision protects the original Vermont judgment (which I think it does), then the later Virginia judgment is invalid (see subdivision (g), "A court of a State [here, Virginia] shall not exercise jurisdiction in any proceeding for a custody or visitation determination commenced during the pendency of a proceeding in a court of another State [here, Vermont] where such court of that other State is exercising jurisdiction consistently with the provisions of this section to make a custody or visitation determination").

So even if Janet and Lisa weren't in a civil union, but were merely living together and had raised a child together, the initial Vermont order would have been valid, and the subsequent Virginia order invalid — that's why I say that this case is not primarily about marriage or civil unions. The Vermont Supreme Court did rely in part on the civil union, in deciding in the first instance that Janet (who isn't IMJ's biological parent) was entitled to parental rights. But while the court noted this "first and foremost," it also pointed to many other factors that would have been present even had this situation arisen without a civil union: "It was the expectation and intent of both Lisa and Janet that Janet would be IMJ's parent. Janet participated in the decision that Lisa would be artificially inseminated to bear a child and participated actively in the prenatal care and birth. Both Lisa and Janet treated Janet as IMJ's parent during the time they resided together, and Lisa identified Janet as a parent of IMJ in the dissolution petition. Finally, there is no other claimant to the status of parent, and, as a result, a negative decision would leave IMJ with only one parent." "Because so many factors are present in this case that allow us to hold that the non-biologically-related partner is the child's parent, we need not address which factors may be dispositive on the issue in a closer case."

Thus, a Vermont court decided — based partly on Lisa's and Janet's Vermont civil union, but also on other factors that would cut in favor of this decision in case — that Janet was entitled to parental rights. At that point, the federal statute kicked in, and the Virginia courts were not allowed to revisit the Vermont decision, not because Lisa and Janet had a civil union, but because the Vermont decision took precedence and would have took precedence even Lisa and Janet had been an unmarried opposite-sex couple Lisa and John.

One last issue: What about the Defense of Marriage Act"? For the reasons I mentioned, the Act doesn't apply, and thus doesn't trump the PKPA.

The Act provides that states (here, Virginia) need not follow "any public act, record, or judicial proceeding of any other State [here, Vermont], territory, possession, or tribe respecting a relationship between persons of the same sex that is treated as a marriage under the laws of such other State, territory, possession, or tribe, or a right or claim arising from such relationship." Virginia thus has no obligation to take into account Lisa's and Janet's civil union. But the Vermont court's custody decision didn't involve a right or claim legally arising from the civil union; it involved a right or claim arising from a child custody decision — a decision that, as I said, could have been rendered even for a couple who had never been either married or in a civil union.

(Had the Vermont court concluded that the decision would have been otherwise absent the civil union, the matter might have been different, but the court strongly suggested that the other factors would have yielded the same result. Also, the child did "aris[e] from such [civil union] relationship," in the sense that it was born into the civil union, and Lisa and Janet might not have agreed to have a child were it not for the civil union — but the right or claim doesn't arise from a relationship, just like, say, two married people's purchase of a house as tenants in common wouldn't be "a right or claim arising" from the marriage, and would remain legally valid even if the marriage were found to be invalid.)

The Vermont Supreme Court held only (and clearly correctly) that DOMA doesn't require Vermont to honor the Virginia custody decision, and given the procedural posture of the case didn't have to "reach the broader question of whether DOMA, and not the PKPA" would govern Virginia's decision whether to honor the Vermont custody decision. But if my analysis is right, then it shows that under federal law Virginia must indeed honor the custody decision that flows from Lisa's and Janet's parenting of the child, though Virginia need not honor the civil union status.

Related Posts (on one page):

  1. Virginia Appellate Court Sides With Vermont Court in Dispute Over Lesbian's Parental Rights:
  2. Conflict Between Vermont Courts and Virginia Courts in Dispute Over Lesbian's Parental Rights:
ptui:
I may not be reading the statute correctly, but if Lisa had just waited four additional months to institute the dissolution of the civil union, would it be correct that the Parental Kidnapping law would not apply and Virginia would be free (subject only to the Full Faith and Credit Clause) to ignore the Vermont ruling?
8.4.2006 4:01pm
Huggy (mail):
The Judge is saying Janet has no standing in Virginia to be a candidate for child custody.
8.4.2006 4:03pm
Joel B. (mail):
It seems that the key determination under Eugene's analysis, is that DOMA doesn't apply. This seems to be a determination that has not happened a great deal. I suppose the relevant text of DOMA is


"No State, territory, or possession of the United States, or Indian tribe, shall be required to give effect to any public act, record, or judicial proceeding of any other State, territory, possession, or tribe respecting a relationship between persons of the same sex that is treated as a marriage under the laws of such other State, territory, possession, or tribe, or a right or claim arising from such relationship."


I suppose the determination then depends on how Virginia veiws the relationship between the two women. Does the parenting relationship arise from the civil union or not, would Virginia allow a woman to adopt a child with a same-sex partner. I suppose the question is do these claims arise from the relationship or not. Ultimately it seems like a question that would have to be resolved in a federal court, unless a higher Virginia court changes direction.

Maybe Vermont sees these claims to parentage arising from all these "other" factors, but in what way are those "other" factors, different from being the civil partner of Lisa?
8.4.2006 4:12pm
Steve:
This seems like the correct analysis. The fundamental question is which state has the power to determine custody issues in the first place. If the answer is Vermont, then its custody order has to be respected, regardless of whether a different court would have entered a different order.
8.4.2006 4:26pm
A.S.:
I almost never disagree with EV's analysis, but here I do. I think DOMA does apply, and thus we WOULD need to "reach the broader question of whether DOMA, and not the PKPA" governs Virginia's decision (that is, which of those two laws trumps the other - a question I take no position on).

EV writes: "Vermont court's custody decision didn't involve a right or claim legally arising from the civil union; it involved a right or claim arising from a child custody decision — a decision that, as I said, could have been rendered even for a couple who had never been either married or in a civil union." This seems to me to be wrong. It is irrelevant that a similar decision could have been rendered even for a couple who had never been either married or in a civil union - that decision in question WAS rendered for a couple in a civil union and the counrt rendering the decision took that civil union into account when making the decision. That seems to me to be plenty sufficient for a court to find that the decision "aris[es] from the civil union." I don't know why EV seems to think that, for DOMA to apply, the fact of the civil union must be explicitly a "but for" reason that the Vermont decision came out the way it did. I would think that if a court made a decision based on facts A, B, C and D, and the court doesn't specify that any of those facts are dispositive, then the decision "aris[es] from" ALL of those facts A, B, C and D.

The Vermont decision was based on a number of factors, including that there was a civil union involved. That seems to me to be plenty reason for the Virginia court to find that the decision arose from the fact of the civil union and thus that DOMA was triggered. If the Vermont court didn't want to trigger DOMA, it should not have mentioned the civil union as one of the reasons is made its decision, or at the very least explicitly stated that it would make the same exact decision even absent the civil union.

Indeed, this seems to be exactly the reason that DOMA was passed! So that courts in states like Virginia that don't want to give effect to court rulings based (even in part) on civil unions wouldn't have to.

(For the record, I am pro-gay marriage. This is just how I read the statutes.)
8.4.2006 4:56pm
PatHMV (mail) (www):
Looks like a solid analysis to me. The PKPA does not depend on whether the new state recognizes the parental rights of the custodian of the child or not. It merely looks at the "home State" of the child, and refers to "contestants" for custody, not "parents".

Also, I would argue DOMA doesn't apply because the custody order does not relate to "a relationship between persons of the same sex". Custody orders are about the relationship of each claimed parent to the child, no the relationship of each the claimed parents to each other.

P.S. Doesn't this case seem awfully similar to those episodes of ER where Kerry Weaver was fighting the parents of her late female "spouse" for custody of the child borne by the deceased?
8.4.2006 5:06pm
PatHMV (mail) (www):
One could also use the general rule of interpretation that a more specific law governs in preference to a more general one to decide that DOMA does not implicitly repeal or amend the PKPA. Congress could have specified in DOMA that it applied to child-custody case and that it, not PKPA, would apply in such cases. It didn't. In the absence of a specific amendment or repeal of PKPA, the more specific law must govern.
8.4.2006 5:12pm
JunkYardLawDog (mail):
Is there anything in the legislative intent and history of the PKPA to indicate it was only intended to apply to heterosexual relationships? Anything to indicate that the PKPA was only intended to apply to "parents" of the child?

Says the "Dog"
8.4.2006 5:30pm
John M. Perkins (mail):
Custody could be with grandparents, stepparents, siblimgs and so on. Custody battles are ugly, and Virginia has made it uglier.

Also, it's funny to complain about Protection when you talk about Kindapping.
8.4.2006 5:55pm
Armen (mail) (www):
Why isn't this a straight res judicata analysis?
8.4.2006 6:23pm
PatHMV (mail) (www):
Armen... because two different states are involved. Virginia need not give any effect to court orders of other states except as required by the full faith and credit clause of the constitution and any Congressional legislation implementing that clause. Here, the Virginia court is saying it doesn't have to give full faith and credit to the Vermont decision because of DOMA.

Also, child custody cases are always subject to being reopened based on changing circumstances and the best interests of the child.
8.4.2006 6:27pm
PatHMV (mail) (www):
ptui... When Lisa filed the action to dissolve is immaterial to the PKPA action. You would be correct to say that had Janet waited more than 6 months after Lisa moved to Virginia to file for contempt in Vermont, then she would have lost her PKPA rights.
8.4.2006 6:37pm
Moral Hazard (mail):

Custody orders are about the relationship of each claimed parent to the child, no the relationship of each the claimed parents to each other.

So what is the relationship between claimed parent Janet and IMJ if not Janet's "civil union" with Lisa?
8.4.2006 6:51pm
BobN (mail):

Indeed, this seems to be exactly the reason that DOMA was passed!


To let a nasty gay parent court-shop her case to a deeply anti-gay state so she can invalidate a perfectly legal custody decisions?

My, what foresight Congress has...

P.S. Would a straight kidnapper -- pardon me, parent -- married or not, have a leg to stand on in a case like this?
8.4.2006 6:52pm
jrose:
Assuming that Eugene's analysis is wrong and DOMA is determinative, doesn't Baker suggest Full Faith and Credit would trump DOMA as applied to this case:
As to judgments, the full faith and credit obligation is exacting. A final judgment in one State, if rendered by a court with adjudicatory authority over the subject matter and persons governed by the judgment, qualifies for recognition throughout the land
That is, FF&C allows a public-policy execption for the issuing a marriage license but not for a final divorce judgment.
8.4.2006 7:08pm
A5:
Lisa moved to Virginia in September and did not file for dissolution of the civil union until Nov 2003.

Did Lisa have standing in the Vermont Court since she was a Virginia Resident at the time she filed the petition? Doesn't Vermont require the person to be a Vermont resident in order to file for dissolution of a civil union?
8.4.2006 7:08pm
Stephen Clark (mail):
Eugene's analysis seems on the mark to me, but it omits one interesting detail: The Vermont Supreme Court also upheld the validity of civil unions contracted by same-sex couples who are not residents of Vermont.

That portion of the holding is more significant--and more suspect--than one might assume. Here's the problem. First, like Massachusetts, Vermont has a "marriage evasion act," which bars opposite-sex couples from getting married in Vermont if their marriage would have been void if contracted in their state of residence. Second, Vermont's civil union law has a provision that extends all the legal benefits and responsibilities of marriage to civil union partners. How do those two laws interact? Does the civil union law extend the "marriage evasion act" bar to same-sex civil union partners?

Lisa, the ex-lesbian represented by Liberty Counsel, argued that it did. In other words, she argued that if the same-sex couple's civil union would be void if contracted in their home state (as would be true nearly anywhere in the U.S.), extension of the "marriage evasion act" to civil unions would preclude most non-resident same-sex couples from contracting a valid civil union in Vermont. Because Lisa and Janet were residents of Virginia at the time of their Vermont civil union, Lisa argued, that civil union was void under the extended "marriage evasion act" because it would have been void if attempted in Virginia.

The Vermont Supreme Court rejected Lisa's argument on statutory interpretation grounds. The court held that the two provisions do not interact that way. The civil union provision, though extending all benefits and obligations of marriage to civil union partners, was not intended by the legislature to extend the "marriage evasion act" to prospective civil union partners. The court provides decent, if not slam-dunk reasoning in support of this conclusion. So civil unions that have been contracted in Vermont by thousands of out-of-state same-sex couples are not invalid because the restriction of the "marriage evasion act" does not extend to same-sex civil unions. Those couples can breathe a sigh of relief.

But here's what is most intriguing. Isn't that unconstitutional? We only have civil unions in Vermont because the Vermont Supreme Court held in Baker v. State (1999) that providing substantially different rights to same-sex and opposite-sex couples discriminates in violation of the state constitution's equal benefits clause. Given Baker, why is it now constitutional for the Vermont legislature to subject opposite-sex couples to the restriction of the "marriage evasion act" but not subject same-sex couples to the same restriction? Does Baker not condemn discrimination against opposite-sex couples? Are the restrictions of the "marriage evasion act" sufficiently de minimis that they don't trigger constitutional scrutiny? The court did not consider this issue, perhaps because Liberty Counsel may not have pressed it. (Why would a right-wing group want to extend the Baker rule that discriminating between same-sex and opposite-sex couples is unconstitutional?)

At any rate, that leaves us with an ambiguity. Did the Vermont Supreme Court silently consider the constitutional issue and affirm the validity of non-resident civil unions after concluding sub silento that applying the "marriage evasion act" only to opposite-sex couples is not unconstitutional? If so, Baker v. State may not be as powerful a repudiation of discrimination between same-sex and opposite-sex couples as gay-rights advocates would like. What does that say about the question left open in Baker: that providing civil unions instead of marriage for same-sex couples might not be sufficiently equal to survive state constitutional review?

Or has the court simply not reached the constitutional question raised by the one-sided "marriage evasion act," in which case non-resident same-sex couples who have contracted civil unions in Vermont still cannot breathe a sigh of relief because in the future the court may hold that the state constitution requires extension of the "marriage evasion act" to same-sex couples? Or has the court locked itself in as to remedy if it does find that one-sided application of the "marriage evasion act" is unconstitutional--so that its remedy in a future case can now only be to invalidate the "marriage evasion act" as applied to opposite-sex couples rather than extending it to same-sex couples, the latter perhaps being the more natural remedy?
8.4.2006 7:27pm
Adam K:
As a Virginia family law attorney (does that matter?), I concur with Eugene's analysis. I think DOMA does complicate the issue, but I believe his analysis on that facet of the case is quite convincing as well.
8.4.2006 7:36pm
A.S.:
On a second, closer read of the Vermont opinion, I'm even more convinced that EV (and the Vermont court) are wrong.

Again, EV wrote:
<blockquote>
But the Vermont court's custody decision didn't involve a right or claim legally arising from the civil union; it involved a right or claim arising from a child custody decision
</blockquote>
That is clearly wrong. As I argued above, the Vermont court decide the custody issue (in part) on the basis of the civil union. More importantly, though, the action that Lisa brought in the Vermont court was not a child custody action, but rather an action to dissolve the civil union! See Para 4 of the Vermont decision. So how EV can say this did not involve a "judicial proceeding of [Vermont] respecting a [Vermont civil union], or a right or claim arising from such [civil union]" (the language of DOMA) is beyond me. The Vermont judicial proceeding involved here was to dissolve the civil union and the child custody issue was an ancillary part of that judicial proceeding. So it seems to me flat out wrong to say, as EV does, that the Vermont proceeding had nothing to do with civil unions.

(I agree, BTW, that if Lisa had not brought a proceeding in Vermont to dissolve the civil union, but rather had simply brought a child custody case - say if she was just an unmarried partner - then DOMA would not apply. But that is manifestly not the case here.)

Moreover, the Vermont jurisdiction here under the PKPA is solely resulting from the action brought by Lisa to dissolve the civil union. See Para 13 of the Vermont decision ("Because Vermont had been IMJ's home state within six months before <b>Lisa filed her dissolution petition in November 2003</b>, Lisa had removed IMJ from Vermont, and Janet lived in Vermont on the date the dissolution proceeding was commenced, the requirements of subsection (A)(ii) were met.") It seems to me that DOMA entitles Vermont to decline to respect a Vermont decision that Vermont has jurisdiction under PKPA when that jurisdiction arises solely from an action to dissolve a civil union.

Accordingly, it seems rather clear to me that EV (and the Vermont court) are wrong.
8.4.2006 10:39pm
PatHMV (mail) (www):
Even if A.S. is correct, however, I think my analysis still allows the PKPA to prevail. The PKPA does not care why the custody action arose. It deals only with the order of custody, not the reasons for it. There is no "arising out of" clause to limit its applicability. It applies whether custody is being contested by biological parents or not. It would even apply if a non-biologically related person had been awarded custody in preference to a biological parent.

The DOMA does not set forth any rules for its interaction with the PKPA, so we must determine whether it repeals the PKPA by implication as it would relate to custody orders between civil union couples. I do not see that as a necessary implication.
8.4.2006 11:31pm
John McCall (mail):
I would think that, in applying DOMA to ignore another state's holding, one would need to show that the holding substantively depends on the marriage-like relationship. Any court holding between two people who once held a civil union together is going to at least mention that civil union; does that mean that DOMA allows free-range second-guessing by all other states? If Virginia has the freedom to ignore the court of original jurisdiction, and Virginia happens to rule first, are other states bound by the Virginia precedent, or can they enter their own opinions? Can Virginia ignore an adoption which occurred years ago in another state, simply because that adoption would not have been valid in Virginia and its validity hinged on a civil union?

If A.S. is correct, DOMA promises years of these headaches.
8.6.2006 1:40pm
Dan Glick (mail) (www):
I have a hypothetical scenario.

Let's say that Alan and Bob are in a civil union in Vermont, and Alan dies intestate. Bob inherits Alan's property, including family heirlooms, and moves to Virginia.

Alan's nearest relative is Chuck, who also lives in Virginia. Chuck sues Bob for possession of the heirlooms. As a non-lawyer, it seems obvious to me that Chuck is out of luck; the inheritance occurred under Vermont law.

But if A.S. is correct in saying:
The Vermont decision was based on a number of factors, including that there was a civil union involved. That seems to me to be plenty reason for the Virginia court to find that the decision arose from the fact of the civil union and thus that DOMA was triggered.
then DOMA would be triggered in my hypothetical case, and Virginia would be free to ignore Vermont's disposition of the property.

A result that so blatantly violates the Full Faith and Credit Clause cannot, IMHO, be an acceptable interpretation of DOMA.

Again, IANAL, so I'm probably missing something. Can anyone tell me what?
8.6.2006 5:12pm
Jesurgislac (mail) (www):
A result that so blatantly violates the Full Faith and Credit Clause cannot, IMHO, be an acceptable interpretation of DOMA.

Why not?

DOMA was invented specifically to repeal the full faith and credit clause of the constitution with regard to lesbians and gays. It has no other purpose, and the state of Virginia is interpreting it most stringently.

Also the state of Virginia has passed legislation (2004) so thorough that effectively if Alan and Bob were both resident in Virginia, and Alan left Bob the residue of his estate in a will that referred to Bob as "his beloved partner of many years", Chuck could have the will overruled and claim Alan's estate as Alan's heir if Alan had died intestate: because Alan's will would have been an attempt to grant Bob the same legal rights as Bob would have had had Alan and Bob been married, and the state of Virginia does not recognize any such arrangements between same-sex partners.

So, yes, in the circumstances you describe, I suspect that if Bob were unwise enough to move to Virginia, Chuck could simply apply in a Virginian court and take everything that Alan once owned away from Bob.

Sooner or later, this will happen:

Albert and Brad get married in Canada. Brad is a US citizen with Landed Immigrant status in Canada. Albert and Brad adopt three kids (Ellen, Fergus, and Gloria) and run a business together: they have a structure of financial planning to support each of them and their children after the other one's death, including pension plans, mutual survivor wills, life insurance.

Brad travels a lot for their business. Brad spent a lot of time in Virginia, setting up a branch office there. He had an affair with Caitlin, and married her: Caitlin and Brad have a child, Deirdre.

This marriage is legal (as far as Brad can find out from the Internet - he really doesn't want to ask a lawyer) in the state of Virginia, which explicitly does not recognize any same-sex relationship in any way. It may be legal in the US, thanks to DOMA. It makes Brad a bigamist in Canada, but after all, he didn't marry Caitlin in Canada. Caitlin knows Brad has to travel a lot for his job: Albert is appreciative that Brad does the long trips to Virginia without complaint.

Brad dies.

As far as Caitlin knows, Brad never made a will: but according to Virginian law, as his spouse, she inherits from him anyway.

According to the law in Canada, however, Brad's marriage to her is invalid: she gets nothing.

Albert - once he recovers from discovering that Brad was a faithless lying scumbag who was leading a double life - is moderately inclined to let Caitlin have something, and his lawyer advises him that Deirdre, as Brad's daughter, is probably entitled to be treated equally with Ellen, Fergus, and Gloria. However, under no circumstances is he prepared to let a stranger inherit Brad's half of their business: their financial planning was all based around him and Brad controlling and running this business together.

Caitlin, discovering that under US and Virginian law she could be entitled to millions if she inherits everything Brad owned, is not inclined to settle: especially as (her lawyer tells her) she has a rock-solid case as Brad's only legal spouse. She's freaked to discover that Brad was a faithless lying scumbag who was leading a double life with a man, but cannot believe that any court would recognise Brad's "gay marriage" as equal to his real marriage to her. She's not about to acccept the "something" Albert offers: she wants what she's legally entitled to, and she wants Deirdre to inherit Brad's half of the business, not take a quarter-share after Albert dies.

That's the situation. The Canadian courts are on Albert's side; the US courts are required by DOMA (and, if Bush's base get their way, the anti-marriage Amendment) to be on Caitlin's side. The business is based in Canada, but has branches&c in the US.

If Albert were Alberta, Caitlin would have no case. If DOMA hadn't partially repealed Article 4 of the Constitution, Caitlin would have no case. If the anti-marriage amendment is passed, Caitlin theoretically has a Constitutional case - but the Canadian courts have no reason to bow to the US. Does the US Supreme Court repeal DOMA, or offend Canada, or refuse to hear the case?

Sooner or later, this will happen.
8.7.2006 8:58pm