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7th Cir. Explains What Same-Sex Marriage and Voter ID Have in Common

What do cases involving challenges to same-sex-marriage and voter ID laws have in common? The answer, according to a per curiam opinion issued today by a panel of judges from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh...more

To Have and to Hold: Modern Family Formation and Application of Constitutional Principles

Recall the year 1868 and §1 of the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution: “All persons born and naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and...more

DOL Issues Notice of Proposed FMLA Rule that Offers Equal Leave Rights to Same-Sex Spouses

On June 20, 2014, the U.S. Department of Labor (“DOL”) issued a notice of proposed rulemaking regarding the definition of “spouse” under the Family and Medical Leave Act (“FMLA”). If adopted, employees in same-sex marriages...more

Same-Sex Marriage Recognized as Valid in Non-Recognition State for Purposes of Interpreting the Bankruptcy Code

As a result of two Federal trial court decisions issued May 19, 2014 and May 20, 2014, Oregon and Pennsylvania became the 18th and 19th states where gay and lesbian couples can legally marry. In these decisions, U.S....more

Washington State Same-Sex Registered Domestic Partnerships Automatically Convert to Lawful Marriages on June 30, 2014

On June 30, 2014, same-sex domestic partnerships registered with the Washington Secretary of State will automatically convert to lawful marriages, unless one of the partners is age 62 or older, or the domestic partners have...more

DOL Proposes Change to FMLA Definition of Spouse to Accommodate Same-Sex Marriage

As was expected, the U.S. Department of Labor has issued a proposed regulation changing the definition of “spouse” for FMLA purposes in order to protect the FMLA rights of employees with same-sex spouses. The proposed...more

Ripples of Windsor: DOL Seeking to Expand the FMLA’s Definition of “Spouse”

Last June, the Supreme Court of the United States struck down Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (“DOMA”) as unconstitutional in United States v. Windsor, 570 U.S. 12 (2013). The Supremes ruled that section 3 of DOMA...more

Whitewood v. Wolf Legalizes Same-Sex Marriage in Pennsylvania

In a decision handed down on May 20th, Federal District Judge John E. Jones III struck down Pennsylvania's ban on same-sex marriage, concluding that "all couples deserve equal dignity in the realm of civil marriage."...more

ERISA: Self-Funded Benefit Plans May Not Have To Cover Same-Sex Spouses?

You already know that the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which prohibited recognition of same-sex marriages, was declared unconstitutional. United States v. Windsor, 133 S.Ct. 2675 (2013)....more

Whitewood v. Wolf: Navigating the Sea of Change for Marriage Equality

It has been a momentous year for marriage equality in our country. The U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark June 2013 decisions overturning the Defense of Marriage Act and upholding the ruling on Proposition 8’s unconstitutionality...more

Appellate Court Notes - Week of March 19

AC35167 - Perugini v. Giuliano: Pro se husband sued his ex-wife’s lawyers claiming violation of the RPC and intentional infliction of emotional distress for failure to disclose the attorney’s past representation of the...more

High Court Employee Benefits Cases: A Review and Look Ahead

Having settled into the new year, we reflect on decisions from the U.S. Supreme Court in 2013 that are likely to have a significant impact in the world of pension and welfare employee benefits and, in some cases, already have...more

End Game in the Fight Over Same Sex Marriage? [Video]

Mar. 1, 2014 -- New York Law School Professor Arthur Leonard talks about how the current round of litigation could be the beginning of the end of the legal battle to allow same sex couples to get married. Leonard also...more

Windsor and Hollingsworth: Shifting Tides in the Battle for Marriage Equality

Of all of the Supreme Court decisions in recent years, few have drawn more public interest (or outcry, depending on an individual’s political school of thought) than United States v. Windsor and Hollingsworth v. Perry and few...more

Illinois Supreme Court Reaffirms Disgorgement of Advance Payment Retainers Under the Dissolution of Marriage Act

This morning, a unanimous Illinois Supreme Court strongly reaffirmed the "leveling the playing field" rules of the Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act in In re Marriage of Earlywine. The Act provides that a court can...more

Illinois Supreme Court To Consider FOIA, Due Process, Custody Hearings and Red Light Camera Ordinances as First Chicago Term Ends

On Wednesday morning, the Illinois Supreme Court allowed petitions for review in a long list of new civil cases, setting up interesting battles in the coming months over public works projects, the state Freedom of Information...more

Employment Law -- Sep 12, 2013

Federal Agencies Respond to Supreme Court’s DOMA Ruling - In the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to strike down part of the Defense of Marriage Act (“DOMA”), federal agencies are starting to respond with new...more

IRS Provides Mobility To Same-Sex Married Couples

Since the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Windsor, 133 S. Ct. 2675 (2013) that same sex married couples would be recognized for federal purposes, a question has existed as to what happens if a same sex couple married in a state...more

Citing Windsor, Two Courts Extend Spousal Rights To Same-Sex Couples Who Reside In States That Do Not Recognize Same-Sex Marriage

As we previously reported, the decision overturning the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) left open many questions, including the impact of the decision on states that do not recognize same-sex marriage. Recent decisions...more

Two Federal Courts Recognize Same-Sex Spousal Rights for Residents of States Not Permitting Same-Sex Marriage

Obergefell v. Kasich and Cozen O’Connor v. Tobits may reflect a growing trend of courts and other bodies to recognize same-sex marriages validly celebrated elsewhere even if the couple’s current state of residence does not...more

Fenwick Employment Brief - July 2013

In a favorable decision for employers, the U.S. Supreme Court in Vance v. Ball State University ruled that employers are strictly liable for harassment by a supervisor where the supervisor is empowered to take tangible...more

Legal Byte: Attorney Vacations & the Court’s Calendar

You need a vacation, but, other counsel is being difficult. What is the law? ...more

Supreme Court Dismisses California's Proposition 8 Same-Sex Marriage Case

Sidestepping a highly divisive issue, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled yesterday that it lacked authority to decide on the merits whether an initiative passed by California voters limiting marriage to opposite gender couples...more

Some Changes for Employers in Connecticut After Supreme Court’s Ruling…And What Doesn’t

Yesterday, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a key provision of the Defense of Marriage Act. The SCOTUSBlog has done an admirable job with the recaps and if you want more information about that decision, you should really...more

Passage Of Controversial Law Could Tarnish Florida’s Reputation As International Dispute Resolution Center

You may not have heard of the think tank called the American Public Policy Alliance (APPA), or its “American Laws for American Courts” initiative, which “was crafted to protect American citizens’ constitutional rights against...more

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