Wyoming Supreme Court Grants Divorce to Same-Sex Couple

The Wyoming Supreme Court yesterday unanimously overturned a lower court ruling and granted a divorce to a same-sex couple legally married in Canada, the Casper Star-Tribune reports:

Wyoming District Judge Keith Kautz of Niobrara County earlier dismissed the 2010 divorce petition of Paula Christiansen against Victoria Lee Christiansen for lack of jurisdiction.

The women were legally married in Canada in 2008.

The Supreme Court opinion, written by Justice Michael Golden, made clear the court's decision only addressed the divorce issue.

"Nothing in this opinion should be taken as applying to the recognition of same-sex marriages legally solemnized in a foreign jurisdiction in any context other than divorce," Golden wrote in a footnote. "The question of recognition of such same-sex marriages for any other reason, being not properly before us, is left for another day."

Igor Volsky at Think Progress, writes:

"The opinion lays out three different types of marriages: legal marriages between a man and a woman that are recognized by the state of Wyoming, marriages that the state does not recognize but are common in other states (like common law marriages) and a third very low form of marriage that is “deemed contrary to the law of nature.” Significantly, the Court found that same-sex marriage fit into the second category and likened them to common law marriages which, while not recognized by the state, can be dissolved within it."

Read the opinion HERE.