A Rose by Any Other Name. . .

Change is in the air for same-sex partnerships in California. The CA Supreme Court ruled yesterday to recognize gay marriage, a ruling that is meeting with mixed but strong reactions throughout the state—and the country.

The overall significance of this landmark ruling has yet to be seen. California was one of the few states sympathetic to gay partnership, according to the Los Angeles Times, and had already “passed one of the strongest domestic partnership laws in the country, giving registered same-sex couples most of the rights of married people.” The opinion of the Court, however, was that the domestic partnership law was not enough. “Giving a different name, such as ‘domestic partnership,’ to the official family relationship of same-sex couples imposes appreciable harm both on the couples and their children.”

The ruling could presage change in other states across the country. Although recognition of marriage is a state issue, and other states would not be required to recognize same-sex marriages performed in California, Pennsylvania constitutional law Professor Kermit Roosevelt predicts that more states will eventually follow California’s example.  

It is wise for same sex couples to consult their estate planning attorney. Regardless of how the recent court ruling plays out in the months to come, the priority of every family, whether or not traditional, is going to be protecting and providing for the ones they love.