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Same-sex marriage ban appealed in North Carolina

Lawmakers from North Carolina have spoken out about the controversial issue of marriage ban that a federal judge struck down in November. In 1996, legislature formerly banned marriage rights for same-sex couples and a constitutional amendment was approved by voters and filed in 2012, citing that marriage only pertained to men and women.

Lawmakers will initiate an appeal this week with the U.S. Supreme Court attesting to the judge's marriage rights ban. A senator from the state said in a statement that voter's opinions should be heard and that the issue will never be settled until the U.S. Supreme Court makes a final ruling. A state representative also added that protecting the will of the residents of the state is extremely important and that the majority "overwhelmingly approved a constitutional amendment."

While North Carolina is hoping to appeal the issue within the Supreme Court, they may be among the five other states that are attempting to also file appeals that were recently declined, including Kentucky, Louisiana, Tennessee, Ohio and Michigan. Still, lawmakers believe settling the issue in the Supreme Court could be the most efficient manner in reaching a final verdict. The Court may possibly decide to take up the case this week.

The topic of same-sex marriage is one of the most controversial issues within the government. A vast number of complexities stem out of marriage rights equality, especially if a divorce arises in the future. Child custody arrangements, the distribution of assets, property division and adoption rights are all part of the equation. However, many issues surround domestic partnerships as well. For example, many argue that employee benefits such as insurance coverage should be available to a designated partner, regardless of sex. In this particular situation, a family lawyer may be able to discuss which options are available to same-sex couples whether the marriage ban in North Carolina is lifted or not.

Source: Washington Post, "North Carolina lawmakers ask Supreme Court to hear same-sex marriage appeal", Hunter Schwarz, Jan. 9, 2015

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