Before the Supreme Court’s recent ruling that Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is unconstitutional, a same-sex partner was unable to obtain immigration status for his or her spouse. After the Supreme Court’s decision, a spouse may petition for his or her spouse if they were lawfully married in a state that recognizes same-sex marriage.
While the change is a major success for human rights activists and the LGBT community, there are still many questions that must be litigated to resolve. For example, what if a couple is united in a civil union under Colorado law? What happens if a couple marries in a state that recognizes same-sex marriage but then returns to a state that does not recognize same-sex marriage?
For now, immigration attorneys are discussing these issues and preparing to litigate cases that are unjustly denied. If you and your partner are lawfully married and want to petition for immigration status, it may be a good idea to speak with an immigration attorney about your options.