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blog home Civil Unions Complaint Leads to Change in Lake County Civil Union Policy

Complaint Leads to Change in Lake County Civil Union Policy

By Nottage and Ward on April 18, 2012

Many out-of-state couples come to Illinois to enter into a civil union. However, each county clerk has control over their own county’s policies regarding out-of-state civil union applicants. Recently, a complaint from an Indiana couple who were denied a civil union license in Lake County has encouraged the clerk’s office to make a policy change, according to The Daily Herald.

The Indiana residents had traveled to Lake County, where one of the women’s fathers lived, to enter into and hold a ceremony for their civil union, but because Indiana does not legally recognize civil unions, their application was denied. According to the Illinois civil union law, which took effect in June 2011, out-of-state lesbian, gay, or straight couples are allowed to obtain civil union licenses and hold ceremonies in Illinois only if the county clerk is satisfied that the applicants’ home state does not prohibit civil unions. Some county clerk’s offices require that applicants sign affidavits affirming that such a union is not prohibited in their home state, while others have other procedures.

Now, in Lake County, out-of-state couples will have to sign an affidavit confirming that their home state does not prohibit their civil union. Not legally recognizing civil unions does not necessarily mean that the state “prohibits” civil unions, however. The couple obtained their civil union license from Cook County after being denied by Lake County. With its new policy change, applying for a civil union license in Lake County should be more out-of-state applicant friendly in the future.

If you are considering entering into a civil union in Illinois, whether you are an Illinois resident or from another state, you probably have a lot of questions. At Nottage and Ward, our experienced Chicago civil union lawyers have a thorough understanding of the civil union law and have kept up-to-date with any significant changes that have been made to the law since it took effect in 2011. For trusted legal support and representation regarding your civil union matters, contact us today for a consultation at (312) 332-2915.

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