Four Same-Sex Couples Challenge Indiana’s Marriage Law

First responders file challenge to Indiana’s refusal to recognize same-sex marriage
Federal lawsuit targets inability of same-sex spouses to claim public safety pension, death benefits

INDIANAPOLIS – This morning, four lawfully married same-sex couples filed a challenge to Indiana’s marriage law on the basis that the state’s unwillingness to recognize legal same-sex marriages performed elsewhere violates the U.S. Constitution.

Of the eight women who joined the lawsuit, three are police officers and one is a retired firefighter. All four couples were lawfully married in states other than Indiana. The lawsuit focuses, among other denied protections, on the inability of first responders’ same-sex spouses to be named as beneficiaries for police and fire pension or death benefits.

The lawsuit names Indiana Gov. Mike Pence and officials with the Indiana Public Retirement System, which oversees the Police Officers’ and Firefighters’ Pension and Disability Fund.

A copy of the lawsuit is available here:

Plaintiffs and attorneys will hold a media availability tomorrow afternoon to discuss their lawsuit. The availability will precede an event sponsored by Indiana Equality Action to celebrate the end of the legislative session and the demise of HJR-3, the controversial constitutional gay marriage ban, which will not appear on this year’s ballot. Both events are open to the press.


Stutz Complex
Southeast Corner, Tenth & Senate
Look for Balloons

Media Availability with Plaintiffs in limited challenge to Indiana’s marriage law
2 p.m.

Indiana Equality Action Sine Die Party
3 p.m.

Indiana Equality Action (IE Action), a 501(c)(4) organization, is a coalition of statewide and regional organizations. IE Action focuses on amending Indiana’s Civil Rights law to protect against discrimination based on either sexual orientation or gender identity, securing bias crimes protections, and keeping Indiana’s Marriage Discrimination Amendment at bay.


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