Marriage Equality USA

Stay Informed

Current Status

  • If you were denied a marriage license in your home county, you can contact the ACLU of Alabama at info@aclualabama.org or by calling 334-265-2754.Alabama.jpg
  • 3 cases in Federal District Court challenging the AL ban on marriage equality; in Searcy v. Strange (see below under LAWSUITS-PENDING) AG Luther Strange has submitted a request for appeal to the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals.

HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVE
  • On 29 August 1996, Governor Fob James issued an executive order banning same-sex marriage and recognition of same-sex marriages performed in other states or foreign countries.
  • Alabama law does not address discrimination based on gender identity or sexual orientation.
  • Since 1994, Alabama has had a hate crimes law applicable to "race, color, religion, national origin, ethnicity, or physical or mental disability." The current law does not apply to crimes committed on account of sexual orientation or gender identity.
  • Constitutional ban on same-sex marriage and civil unions, per legislation/referendum Amendment 774, from 2006-2015.
  • In April 2009, Representative Alvin Holmes introduced HB533, a bill that would have added sexual orientation to the list of hate crime categories. Representative Patricia Todd, the legislature's first and only openly‐LGBT member, unsuccessfully attempted to add gender identity to the bill. Holmes had introduced identical bills in previous sessions: HB829 (2008), HB247 (2007), HB57 (2006), HB423 (2001), HB85 (2000), and has pushed for the inclusion of sexual orientation in the hate crimes law since at least 1999. 
  • 23 January 2015, U.S. District Judge Callie V.S. Granade ruled that the Alabama ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional, violating both the 14th Amendment and the Equal Protection Clause. See Searcy v. Strange below.
  • 27 January 2015, State's reaction to same-sex marriage ruling embarrassing - By Josh Moon, Montgomery Advertiser
  • 7 February 2015, profile of Alabama District Court Judge Granade:  Activist judge? Careful jurist? Meet the woman who made gay marriage legal in Alabama - By Brendan Kirby, AL.com
  • 18 February 2015, 7 Alabama Counties Still Barring Marriage Equality - AP via News 5 WKRG 
  • 2 March 2015, An Alabama LGBT Family Can Finally Live Together as a Family - MEUSA News Blog
  • Technically/legally civil marriage equality was in effect at the state level from 9 February 2015 through 3 March 2015. (Meaning same-sex couples were legally allowed to marry statewide.) However, certain locales were still refusing to issue licenses to same-sex couples. Be sure to keep up on what's going on legally via the legal cases listed under LAWSUITS-PENDING below.
  • 3 March 2015, in Alabama Policy Institute v. King (see below under LAWSUITS-PENDING), the Alabama Supreme Court granted the petition, issued a ruling upholding the state's marriage ban, and ordered judges to stop issuing licenses to same-sex couples. 4 March 2015, Alabama Supreme Court Throws Tantrum, Defies Federal Judge, Halts Marriages - By Mark Joseph Stern, Slate OUTWARD
  • 4 March 2015, Mobile County, Ala., stops issuing all marriage licenses after same-sex ruling - By Jay Reeves, AP via LGBTQNation