A New York appeals court ruled that the survivor of a gay marriage could receive the inheritance from his male spouse on Thursday, even though New York does not yet allow legal gay marriages to be performed in the state.
J. Craig Leiby and H. Kenneth Rantfle were legally married in Canada in 2008. Three years ago, Rantfle died of lung cancer and left the majority of his estate to Leiby. But Rantfle’s brother contested the will, saying that Leiby’s inheritance would violate New York law, according to CBS New York.
Gay marriages are illegal in New York, but the state recognizes legal out of state and out of country marriages; therefore the court ruled that Leiby is legally entitled to the inheritance as a surviving spouse.
Lambada Legal said the decision was the first of its kind at an appellate level in New York, according to the Huffington Post.
Lambada’s senior counsel member Susan Somer said the decision,
“puts to rest the idea that out-of-state marriages of same-sex couples could be vulnerable to attack.”
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