SCOTUS declines review, Virginia’s Ban of Same-Sex Marriage …

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Surprising legal analysts across the country, the United States Supreme Court declined to grant requests from appellants in five states where measures banning same-sex marriage had been overturned. By declining review, the rulings from each of the appellate courts remains, clearing the way for same-sex marriages to begin or recommence in eleven states – including here in Virginia.

This decision marks the culmination of lawsuits filed by two Virginia couples, Timothy Bostic and Tony London, and Carol Schall and Mary Townley, seeking to overturn Virginia’s constitutional and statutory bans on same-sex marriage. Judge Arenda L. Wright Allen of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia ruled on February 13, 2014, that Virginia’s bans were unconstitutional, a ruling that was upheld this July by the United States Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit. ShounBach’s own, Susan Butler, co-wrote the amicus brief filed on behalf of the Virginia Chapter of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, in support of lifting the ban.

With the Supreme Court’s decision, same-sex marriage now becomes legal throughout the 4th Circuit, which includes not only Virginia but Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina and West Virginia as well.

The lawyers of ShounBach have been representing clients in matters that are unique to same-sex relationships including custody issues, separation agreements and same-sex divorces outside of Virginia. Given the recent decisions of the Court of Appeals and the United States Supreme Court, we now look forward to using our years of experience in handling complex divorce cases throughout the courts of Northern Virginia to help clients in same-sex marriages and divorces.


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Since 1975, ShounBach has served the Northern Virginia community. Our team brings over 200 years of combined legal experience and has grown to be one of Virginia’s largest family and estate law firms.

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