Same-Sex Marriage and How it Affects Quit Claim Deeds (and other Conveyances of Real Property)

by Benjamin Tarshish on July 1, 2015

The purpose of this article is to discuss the recent decision by the United States Supreme Court on same-sex marriage, dealt with in the case of Obergefell et. al. v. Hodges, Director, Ohio Dept. of Health, et. al. with the recent issued decision on Friday, June 26th, 2015. In its decision, the Supreme Court of the United States held that both the Due Process and Equal Protection clauses of the Fourteenth Amendment require a state to license a marriage between same sex couples and to recognize same sex marriages that were lawful and valid in another state. This recent ruling invalidates existing federal and state laws that prohibit same-sex marriages and eliminates the state-specific treatment of same-sex marriage. As a result, for real estate conveyancing purposes, same-sex couples that are legally married in any state in the country are recognized as a married couple in any state despite a state law that may not recognize the marriage as legal and valid.

The Supreme Court’s ruling also has an effect on real property conveyances. To avoid problems going forward, when a married, same sex couple is conveying any interest in real property, the drafter of the document conveying the property should designate the married couple as “Jane and Susan, a married couple”, or “Frank and Thomas, married to each other”. It is important to not make the mistake of referring to the couple as “Frank, a married person and Thomas, a married person” because this designation fails to identify to whom each person is married.  This is the proper method of how to draft a quit claim deed for same-sex couples, as well as other real property conveyances.

Real Estate Attorneys at Tarshish Cody have experience drafting Minnesota Same-Sex Marriage Quit Claim Deeds, as well as other real property conveyances. If you need assistance with drafting up real property conveyances, such as quit claim deeds or contract for deeds, please contact attorney Benjamin Tarshish or call 952-361-5556.

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