FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 6, 2010
CONTACT: Vaishalee Raja, Communications Director
PHONE: 916-284-9187 EMAIL: vaishalee AT eqca DOT org
State Assembly Passes Bill Eliminating Barriers to Dissolve Marriages, Domestic Partnerships for Same-Sex Couples
Sacramento— Today the California State Assembly passed the Separation Equity Act (AB 2700) in a 44-21 vote. The bill, introduced by Assemblymember Fiona Ma (D-San Francisco) and co-sponsored by Equality California and the Conference of California Bar Associations, would create a consolidated form and procedure to dissolve both a civil marriage and domestic partnership.
"Currently, couples must navigate a confusing system that is especially daunting for those who lack legal representation," said Geoff Kors, Equality California executive director. "Since the State of California treats the relationships of same-sex couples differently, we need this legislation to prevent couples from having to jump through bureaucratic hoops until we restore a system of fairness and equality."
AB 2700 would amend the state's family code, allowing for couples who first registered as domestic partners and who legally married thereafter, to dissolve both contracts through a single, uniform procedure. The current system forces couples to go through a separate process for each.
"AB 2700 brings us a step closer towards marriage equality by recognizing that ALL marriages are treated alike, even when it comes to dissolving marriages," Assemblymember Ma said.
Equality California (EQCA) is the largest statewide lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender-rights advocacy organization in California. Over the past decade, Equality California has strategically moved California from a state with extremely limited legal protections for LGBT individuals to a state with some of the most comprehensive civil rights protections in the nation. Equality California has passed over 60 pieces of legislation and continues to advance equality through legislative advocacy, electoral work, public education and community empowerment. www.eqca.org