On June 26, 2013, the United States Supreme Court issued its landmark decision regarding same-sex marriage in United States v. Windsor, 570 U.S. 744 (2013). In that case, the Court held that restricting U.S. federal interpretation of "marriage" and "spouse" to apply only to opposite-sex unions, by Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), is unconstitutional under the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment. In the majority opinion, Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote: "The federal statute is invalid, for no legitimate purpose overcomes the purpose and effect to disparage and to injure those whom the State, by its marriage laws, sought to protect in personhood and dignity."
Since that landmark ruling, member of the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered communities have been able to avail of immigration benefits in the same way as other family immigration cases. This means that if you need to procure a visa for your spouse or child, you face the same issues as a heterosexual family dealing with the immigration system would. However, LGBT clients face some unique issues. These include:
• Potential Changes in Same-Sex Marriage Legislation: It is no secret that the current administration is not only hostile to immigration in general but has also displayed a very hostile animus toward the gay, lesbian and transgendered community. Since LGBT rights are such a highly emotional political issue, the rights that the LGBT community have gained recently may very well be overturned suddenly. LGBT immigrants worry about any sudden changes that might affect their spouses and loved ones who have not yet successfully legally entered the United States.
• Medical Needs While Detained: this comes into play when transgender individuals or HIV-positive persons are detained and denied medically necessary care or medication.
• Home Country Persecution: many LGBT immigrants come from countries that do not have the same liberal laws or rights afforded to the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender communities. We are sensitive to this phenomenon and are able to navigate the situation in the beneficiary’s home country to ensure their safety during the process.
Schedule your consultation at our Scottsdale, Arizona office as soon as possible and let us help you out bring your LGBT loved one immigrate successfully to the United States.
We know you want you to be able to live and work in the United States legally and without fear. Our staff works diligently for our clients in Scottsdale, AZ who are struggling with immigration issues unique to the LGBT community. Let our law office assist you with your same-sex immigration case. Call 480-355-4245 today to speak with one of our attorneys or staff. We speak English, Tagalog (Filipino), Spanish, French and Italian.