In spite of the 2015 ruling that ensured that all marriages are protected, there are still officials who hold opinions that run contrary to that law. There have been some instances when judges have been asked to recuse themselves after their personal views regarding same sex relationships conflicted with a case on their dockets. While New York has laws that have protected the rights of same sex couples, there may be circumstances when a resident may fear that his or her rights will not be safeguarded.

In one state, a woman has asked that the judge overseeing her divorce step down from the case. She fears that he will not issue a fair ruling regarding child custody based on her declaration that she is gay. The judge is purportedly a pastor in addition to his duties as a judge and has stated that he believes same sex marriages are opposed to his religious beliefs.

Twice the wife in the divorce case has petitioned for the judge to remove himself. She then asked for the civil appeals board in her state to remove him. That request was also denied. The woman requested the recusal based on precedents of other judges being censured for their personal views that run counter to the rights of same sex couples.

Though the order has not been finalized, the judge’s initial decision awards shared physical custody to both the father and the mother. He has purportedly issued the same decision in two other cases that involved gay mothers. It is unclear whether the mother in this case will seek further action against this official. New York residents who fear that their rights in same sex family matters are not being upheld may seek the assistance of an experienced family law attorney.


Source:, “Lesbian woman wants Christian judge to recuse himself from her divorce case“, Tre’ Goins-Phillips, July 31, 2017