In recent years, America has seen a progressive shift in LGBT rights, especially since the country’s legalization of same-sex marriage took place in 2015. While the gradual shift in favor of LGBT rights is certainly one worthy of celebrating in Florida, legal issues regarding same-sex marriage process has a long way to go.
Florida laws recently leaned in favor of protecting same-sex couples and the stages of the marriage process. As the state’s adhering to constitutional rights was, in fact, a legal requirement, many point out that such complications should not occur in the first place.
A Change in the Law
The legalization of same-sex marriage allows gay couples the same rights as opposite sex couples, but some states do not completely adhere to certain aspects of the law, including those regarding death certificates. Slate recently reported on the 2017 federal judge ruling that the state of Florida must add same-sex spouses to death certificates. Pointing out that Florida actively violated surviving spouses’ constitutional rights in refusing to add spouses to certificates, Slate also acknowledges incidents wherein other judges have attempted to find loopholes in the law to deny same-sex couples of these rights.
State Protection of Rights
Judges may attempt to violate constitutional rights, but many organizations in Florida help fight to maintain equal rights among all citizens, regardless of sexual orientation. Equality Florida, which houses two major civil rights organizations dedicated to securing Florida’s LGBT community, provides a legal guide that contains details of the state law. A section in the guide reiterates the law, which holds that states allowing same-sex couples to get married also must allow non-residents to take advantages of those rights. While the 2015 legalization changed the world of same-sex marriage, Equality Florida urges the LGBT community to continuously refresh knowledge on state-specific laws regarding marriage and civil rights.