Pregnant man wanting divorce awaits ruling on legitimacy of marriage under Arizona law
Beatie, who was born a woman, made headlines four years ago when he became pregnant when his wife Nancy couldn’t have children. He has since given birth to three children.
This has led to Judge Douglas Gerlach, who is overseeing divorce proceedings between Beatie and Nancy, to query the validity of the marriage in the first place. This is because under Arizona law same-sex marriage is not legally recognised, and by giving birth, Beatie – although legally a man – has done something that only women, or at least people born as women, can do.
The judge wrote the following in the court record:
“It appears that, by any reasonable standard, (Beatie) was the biological mother of those children at the times they were born. As such, parties’ marriage was between a female and a person capable of giving birth, who later did so.”
Gerlach asked the Arizona Attorney General’s Office for an opinion regarding the validity of the marriage but they declined to offer one. Gerlach is therefore left to make the decision alone and a ruling is not expected until early February.
Beatie has called the judge’s decision to protract the case frustrating and said:
“I live my life, I know who I am and someone else’s opinion, even though it is a Judge’s opinion is not going to change that. I am Thomas, I am husband, I am father, I am a man, hear me roar”.
Photo by trollhare via Flickr.com under a Creative Commons license
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Marilyn Stowe is the senior partner in Stowe Family Law, which has offices in Yorkshire, Cheshire and London. With more than 30 years’ experience handling divorce cases and family law proceedings she is regarded as one of the most formidable and sought after divorce lawyers in the UK. In 2012, Marilyn became one of the first solicitors to qualify as a family law arbitrator.
All persons mentioned in the scenarios are fictitious: details have been deliberately changed in order to protect identities and other confidential circumstances of my clients. All advice and information on this blog including posts written by guest authors, is given only as a general guide to the operation of the law on the date of publication. Readers must place no reliance whatsoever on the content of this blog and must always obtain their own legal advice. Marilyn Stowe, Stowe Family Law LLP and guest authors accept no liability whatsoever arising as a result of reliance upon its content.
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