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  • NJ A1741
  • Recognizes same-sex marriages entered into outside the State.
In Committee
Crossed OverPassedSignedDead/Failed/VetoedVeto Overridden
2016-2017 Regular Session
This bill would recognize same-sex marriages entered into outside New Jersey. Specifically, the bill provides that a marriage of two persons of the same sex entered into outside this State which is valid under the laws of the jurisdiction in which the marriage was entered shall be valid in this State. The bill's findings and declarations state that in two cases decided June 26, 2013, the United States Supreme Court strengthened the rights of same-sex couples. In United States v. Windsor, No. 12-307 (570 U.S. ____ (2013)), the Court struck down a portion of the federal "Defense of Marriage Act," (Pub.L. 104-199, 110 Stat. 2419, enacted, 1 U.S.C. §7 and 28 U.S.C. §1738C) that had denied federal benefits to same-sex couples married under state law. In Hollingsworth v. Perry, No. 12-144 (570 U.S. ____ (2013)), the Court effectively allowed same-sex marriages to resume in the state of California. In the majority opinion in Windsor, Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote: "The federal statute is invalid, for no legitimate purpose overcomes the purpose and effect to disparage and to injure those whom the State, by its marriage laws, sought to protect in personhood and dignity. By seeking to displace this protection and treating those persons as living in marriages less respected than others, the federal statute is in violation of the Fifth Amendment." In the United States, same-sex marriage is authorized in Connecticut, Delaware, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, and the District of Columbia. The Hollingsworth v. Perry opinion effectively authorized same-sex marriage in California as well. Outside the United States, same-sex marriage is authorized in Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Denmark, France, Iceland, Norway, Portugal, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, and The Netherlands. Same-sex couples who were married in these other states and countries are not recognized as married in this State; according to a 2007 Formal Opinion by the New Jersey Attorney General, same-sex marriages established under the laws of other states and foreign nations are to be treated as civil unions in New Jersey. In addition to providing that same-sex marriages entered into outside the State are valid here, the bill amends R.S.37:1-7, concerning the remarriage of persons already married to each other. Under the bill, persons who entered into a same-sex marriage outside New Jersey may remarry each other in this State. The bill would apply to marriages entered into outside this State prior to, on, and after the effective date.
Introduced, Referred to Assembly Judiciary Committee  (on 1/27/2016)
Date Chamber Action Description
1/27/2016 A Introduced, Referred to Assembly Judiciary Committee
Date Motion Yea Nay Other
None specified