Marriage & Couples Rights

  • NV-Census-Map

    Estimating the Economic Boost of Extending Marriage to Same-Sex Couples in Nevada

    By M.V. Lee Badgett, Christy Mallory
    June 2014

    Extending marriage to same-sex couples in Nevada would generate an additional $23 million to $53 million in spending to the state. According to 2010 U.S. Census, the state of Nevada has about 7,140 resident in same-sex relationships. Of those couples, 50 percent or 3,570 couples would chose to marry within the first 3 years, a pattern that has been witnessed in other states. As a result, about 2,300 marriages would occur in this first year alone; adding an additional $14 to $34 million in revenue to the state that year.

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  • AZ-Census-Map

    Estimating the Economic Boost of Marriage for Same-Sex Couples in Arizona

    By E.G. Fitzgerald, Christy Mallory, M.V. Lee Badgett
    June 2014

    Extending marriage to same-sex couples in Arizona would generate an estimated $61.9 million in spending to the state economy. This economic boost would add $5.1 million in sales tax revenue to the state coffer and spending related to same-sex couples’ wedding ceremonies and celebrations could generate up to 517 full- and part-time jobs in the state. According to 2010 U.S. Census data, 15,817 same-sex couples live in Arizona. Of those couples, an estimated 50 percent or 7,909 couples would choose to marry in the first three years.

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  • Friend-of-the-Court Briefs Submitted by Williams Institute Scholars in 6th Circuit Marriage Cases

    June 2014

    Williams Institute scholars, along with leading women’s legal organizations, filed an amicus brief in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit in the cases of Bourke v. Beshear, Tanco v. Haslam, and DeBoer v. Snyder. The amicus briefs argue that, like laws that discriminate based on sex, laws that discriminate based on sexual orientation warrant heightened judicial scrutiny because, among other considerations, such laws are based on overbroad gender stereotypes. Williams Institute Distinguished Scholar, Gary Gates, also submitted briefs on the demographic same-sex couples and their families in Kentucky, Tennessee, and Michigan.

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  • Estimating the Economic Boost of Marriage for Same-Sex Couples in Indiana

    By E.G. Fitzgerald, Christy Mallory, M.V. Lee Badgett
    May 2014

    Extending marriage to same-sex couples in Indiana would generate over $39 million in spending to the state economy. According to 2010 U.S. Census, 11,074 same-sex couples live in Indiana. Of those couples, an estimated 50 percent (or 5,537 couples) would choose to marry in the first three years. Over 3,000 marriages would occur in the first year alone, and bring up to $25 million in revenue to the state that year. Spending related to same-sex couples’ wedding ceremonies and celebrations would generate 564 full- and part-time jobs in the state.

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  • Friend-of-the-Court Briefs Submitted by Williams Institute Scholars in 6th Circuit Marriage Case

    May 2014

    Williams Institute scholars, along with leading women’s legal organizations, filed an amicus brief in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit in the case of Obergefell v. Himes. The amicus brief argues that, like laws that discriminate based on sex, laws that discriminate based on sexual orientation warrant heightened judicial scrutiny because, among other considerations, such laws are based on overbroad gender stereotypes. Williams Institute Distinguished Scholar, Gary Gates, also submitted a brief on the demographic of same-sex couples and their families in Ohio.

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  • Estimating the Economic Boost of Extending Marriage to Same-Sex Couples in Utah

    By E.G. Fitzgerald, Christy Mallory, M.V. Lee Badgett
    April 2014

    Extending marriage to same-sex couples in Utah would generate up to $15.5 million in spending to the state economy. According to 2010 U.S. Census, the most recent data available, 3,909 same-sex couples live in Utah. Of those couples, the Institute estimates that 50 percent (1,955 couples) would choose to marry in the first three years.

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  • Friend-of-the-Court Briefs Submitted by Williams Institute Scholars in 4th Circuit Marriage Case

    April 2014

    Williams Institute scholars, along with the National Women’s Law Center and other leading women’s legal organizations, filed an amicus brief in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit in the case of Bostic v. Schaefer. Williams Institute Distinguished Scholar, Gary Gates, also submitted a brief shedding light on the demographic and economic characteristics of same-sex couples and their families in Virginia.

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  • Estimating the Economic Boost of Extending Marriage to Same-Sex Couples in Virginia

    By M.V. Lee Badgett, Sheila Nezhad, Christy Mallory
    April 2014

    Extending marriage to same-sex couples in Virginia would generate up to $60 million in spending to the state economy. According to 2010 U.S. Census, the most recent data available, 14,244 same-sex couples live in Virginia. Of those couples, the Institute estimates that 50 percent (7,122 couples) would choose to marry in the first three years, a pattern that has been observed in Massachusetts and elsewhere. Nearly 5,000 marriages would occur in the first year alone, and bring up to $38 million in revenue to the state of Virginia that year.

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  • Estimating the Economic Boost of Marriage for Same-Sex Couples in Oregon

    By Erin G. Fitzgerald, Christy Mallory, M.V. Lee Badgett
    April 2014

    Extending marriage to same-sex couples in Oregon would generate nearly $50 million in spending to the state economy. According to 2010 U.S. Census, the most recent data available, 11,773 same-sex couples live in Oregon. Of those couples, the report estimates that 50 percent (5,887 couples) would choose to marry in the first three years, a pattern that has been observed in Massachusetts and elsewhere. Nearly 4,000 marriages would occur in the first year alone, and bring over $30 million in revenue to the state of Oregon that year.

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  • Estimating the Economic Boost of Marriage for Same-Sex Couples in Colorado

    By Lee Badgett, Christy Mallory
    April 2014

    Extending marriage to same-sex couples in Colorado would generate $50 million in spending to the state and local economy. According to the 2010 U.S. Census, 12,424 same-sex couples live in Colorado. Of those couples, the Institute estimates that 50% (6,212 couples) would choose to marry in the first three years, a pattern that has been observed in Massachusetts and elsewhere. Of the couples that will marry, 64% of those marriages will occur during the first year, 21% in the second year and 15% in the third years.

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  • Friend-of-the-Court Briefs Submitted by Williams Institute Scholars in 9th Circuit Marriage Case

    October 2013

    Williams Institute scholars, along with the National Women’s Law Center and other leading women’s legal organizations, filed an amicus brief in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in the case of Sevcik v. Sandoval. Williams Institute Distinguished Scholar, Gary Gates, also submitted a brief shedding light on the demographic and economic characteristics of same-sex couples and their families in Nevada.

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  • Estimating the Economic Boost of Marriage Equality in Minnesota

    By Angeliki Kastanis, M.V. Lee Badgett
    April 2013

    Extending marriage rights to same-sex couples in Minnesota would bring an estimated $42 million to the state and local economy. According to the 2010 U.S. Census, 10,207 same-sex couples live in Minnesota. Total state and local tax revenue would rise by $3 million, including an estimated $128,000 in local taxes. As seen in Iowa, same-sex couples from neighboring states that do not allow same-sex couples to marry may travel to Minnesota and generate additional spending on wedding and tourism-related goods and services.

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  • Public Support for Marriage for Same-sex Couples by State

    By Andrew R. Flores, Scott Barclay
    April 2013

    By the end of 2012, 12 states and the District of Columbia had support for same-sex marriage at or above 50%. Of these 12 states, all currently perform marriages, civil unions, or domestic partnerships for same-sex couples. Thirteen additional states presently are within 5 percentage points of majority support. In the last eight years, every state has increased in its support for marriage for same-sex couples with an average increase of 13.6%. If present public opinion trends continue, another 8 states will be above 50% support by the end of 2014.

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  • Estimating the Economic Boost of Marriage Equality in Illinois

    By Angeliki Kastanis, M.V. Lee Badgett
    March 2013

    Extending marriage to same-sex couples in Illinois would generate up to $103 million in spending to the state and local economy. According to the 2010 U.S. Census, 23,049 same-sex couples live in Illinois. Of those couples, the report estimates that 50% (11,525 couples) would choose to marry in the first three years, a pattern that has been observed in Massachusetts and elsewhere. Of the couples that will marry, 64% of those marriages will occur during the first year, 21% in the second year and 15% in the third year.

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  • Friend-of-the-Court Briefs Submitted by Williams Institute Scholars in Two Marriage-Related Cases Pending Before the U.S. Supreme Court

    March 2013

    Williams Institute scholars participated in friend-of-the court briefs filed in two pending U.S. Supreme Court cases in which the Court is weighing the constitutionality of measures related to marriage by same-sex couples. In Hollingsworth v. Perry, the Court is considering the validity of California’s Proposition 8, and in United States v. Windsor, the Court is considering the validity of Section 3 of the federal Defense of Marriage Act.

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  • Urban Bias, Rural Sexual Minorities, and the Courts

    By Luke Boso
    February 2013

    This article, originally published in the UCLA Law Review, examines the role of courts in rural sexual minorities’ lives. It focuses first on state action, explaining that courts’ failure to apply heightened scrutiny to sexual orientation classifications harms rural sexual minorities uniquely in family and employment law contexts, where judges explicitly invoke antigay rural norms to justify discriminatory treatment.

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  • Same-Sex Legal Marriage and Psychological Well-Being: Findings from the California Health Interview Survey

    By Richard G. Wight, Allen J. LeBlanc, and M.V. Lee Badgett
    December 2012

    Psychological distress is lower among lesbian, gay and bisexual individuals who are legally married to a person of the same sex, compared with those not in legally recognized unions. The study also has implications for understanding mental health disparities based on sexual orientation: There were no statistically significant differences in psychological distress between heterosexuals, and lesbian, gay, and bisexual persons in any type of legally recognized same-sex relationship.

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  • The Future Impact of Same-Sex Marriage: More Questions Than Answers

    By Nan D. Hunter
    October 2012

    The greatest potential for changes in the social meaning of marriage will arise in three areas for which there is empirical evidence of significant differences between gay and straight couples: division of household labor, sexual exclusivity & childrearing. While the number of same-sex couples in the population is too small to produce significant change in overall patterns of behavior, the issue of gay marriage has generated so much attention and debate that a mixed process of gay assimilation to and effect on the social meaning of marriage is a reasonable expectation.

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  • Same-Sex Couples and Marriage: Model Legislation for Allowing Same-Sex Couples to Marry or All Couples to Form a Civil Union

    By Jennifer C. Pizer and Sheila James Kuehl
    August 2012

    A “Model Marriage Code” and a “Model Civil Union Code” will ensure greater consistency and predictability among state laws offering protections to same-sex couples. It also will reduce confusion when separate state rules governing same-sex and different-sex couples affect employers, businesses, government and other institutions.

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  • Sexual Liberty and Same-Sex Marriage: An Argument from Bisexuality

    By Michael Boucai
    August 2012

    Published in the San Diego Law Review, this article proposes that same-sex marriage bans are unconstitutional under Lawrence v. Texas because they channel people, particularly bisexuals, into heterosexual relations and relationships. In addition to detailing this claim’s legal and factual bases, “Sexual Liberty and Same-Sex Marriage” refutes the supposed doctrinal imperatives that underlie bisexual erasure in gay rights litigation.

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