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Marsha411JD
Marsha411JD, Lawyer
Category: Military Law
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Experience:  Licensed attorney and former Navy JAG serving ashore, afloat and at the OJAG
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Being as the military now recognizes Gay Marriage for benefits;

Customer Question

Being as the military now recognizes Gay Marriage for benefits; How does California domestic pardner laws fit in? Especially for retirees; such as ID cards, travel & lodging?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Military Law
Expert:  Marsha411JD replied 1 year ago.

Hello,

Thank you for your question. Same sex domestic partners of retirees are now entitled to the same benefits as married servicemember and retiree spouses are. That said, the DOD is implementing the changes as we speak, so the Secretary of Defense ordered the Departments to have procedures in place to implement the policy change with a target date of August 31, 2013. However, they have until October 1 (which is the beginning the the Government's fiscal year) if needed. So, that means as early as August 31, same sex domestic partners can apply for ID cards and enroll/use other benefits that are listed in the following links: (you can see the benefits by going to those links)
http://www.defense.gov/news/same-sexbenefitsmemo.pdf
http://www.defense.gov/news/newsarticle.aspx?id=119260

Please let me know if you need any clarification. I would be glad to assist you further if I can.

Marsha411JD, Lawyer
Category: Military Law
Satisfied Customers: 17526
Experience: Licensed attorney and former Navy JAG serving ashore, afloat and at the OJAG
Marsha411JD and other Military Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

I understand your answer; but what of the case of legally registered opposite sex domestic partners in California?

Expert:  Marsha411JD replied 1 year ago.
They will be treated the same as domestic partners from any State. In other words, domestic partnership of same sex couples if as recognizable as married couples, at least at this point. There may come a day when and if all states legalize marriage between same sex couples, that the Government will start requiring all couples who want benefits to be married, but that day has not arrived. So, the current policy is to accept domestic partnerships.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Are you saying that I can take my California opposite sex Domestic Partnership registration certificate to a military ID issuing facility & they must issue an ID for my Domestic partner of 35 yrs. in spite of not being "Married" due to her religious beliefs?

Expert:  Marsha411JD replied 1 year ago.
No, that is not what I stated. This only has to do with same sex domestic partnerships. Please take a look at the links I provided to you. At this point, there is no specific instruction/regulation that allows opposite sex couples to substitute domestic partnerships for marriages. That said, it can always change. You will want to speak to your personnel detachment.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for your help attempting to interpret another Government "SNAFU". I guess, like the health care bill, we "Need to Read it to Find Out Whats in it!" Have a great day & again Thanks. A Retired Navy Chief.


 

Expert:  Marsha411JD replied 1 year ago.
You're welcome. As you know, this is a very big bureaucracy we are talking about. Once they have a little time (or a lot) they will figure it all out. I do think there will be challenges from opposite sex couples who have domestic partnership agreements on quite a few fronts. So, stand by.

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Marsha411JD
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Licensed attorney and former Navy JAG serving ashore, afloat and at the OJAG