Laws

United States of America

WISCONSIN

Limited information only available for these topics

Access to Children
Adoption of Children
Age of Consent
Anti-Vilification
Artifical Insemination
Assisted Reproduction
Civil Unions
Custody of Children
  Defamation
Discrimination
Estates, Wills
Fostering Children
Gender Identity
Harassment
Hate Crimes
  Health, Medical
HIV/Aids
Homosexuality
Inheritance, Wills
In Vitro Fertilisation (IVF)
Marriage
Partners
  Parenting
Property
Sodomy
Taxation
Transgender, Transsexual
Violence
Wrongful Death

Please read the Disclaimer

Children: Access, Custody, Visitation Legislation/Cases/References
1.

Courts & Tribunals:

In 1998, it was reported that Courts in Wisconsin have ruled that nonbiological partners have the right to sue for custody of an ex-partner's biological child [R1.1].

R1.1 FrontiersWeb: Ruled Out JUN 98
Civil Unions, Partners: Domestic, Registered Legislation/Cases/References
1.

State:

On 21 September 2017, Wisconsin Statute § 66.0510 was created which prohibits all municipalities, counties, and school districts from offering employee benefit plan coverage to (unmarried) domestic partners of employees as of 01 January 2018 and only permits offering such employee benefit plans to their employees, and the spouses and dependent children of such employees [R1.4].

On 20 June 2011, Judge Daniel Moeser ruled that the domestic registry law does not violate the constitutional ban [C4.7], [R4.6].

In July 2009, Wisconsin Family Action filed a lawsuit that seeks to strike down the domestic partner registry [R4.1].

See also: 4. Courts & Tribunals

Previously:

On 30 June 2009, Democratic governor Jim Doyle signed into law a bill granting the state's same-sex couples access to a domestic-partnership registry and benefits such as hospital visitation rights and survivor benefits [R1.1]. On 03 August 2009, the new law came into force [R1.3].


Chapter 770 Domestic Partnership [L1.2].

770.01 Definitions. In this chapter:

(1) "Domestic partner" means an individual who has signed and filed a declaration of domestic partnership in the office of the register of deeds of the county in which he or she resides.

(2) "Domestic partnership" means the legal relationship that is formed between 2 individuals under this chapter.


In February 2009, the Governor Jim Doyle announced plans to introduce domestic partnerships [R1.1].

2.

County:

On 28 July 2011, the Milwaukee County Board approved extending health insurance benefits to same-sex or opposite-sex domestic partners of county workers. County Executive Chris Abele promised to sign the measure [R2.1].

3.

Cities & Towns:

On 24 April 2012, Eau Claire City Council voted 10–1 to change health insurance benefits to offer employees the option of a family plan for couples, expanding the present individual plan starting June [R3.5].

On 19 March 2012, the Manitowoc City Council voted 5–4 to grant insurance benefits to same-sex partners [R3.4].

On 07 September 2011, in a 10–6 vote Appleton Common Council approved a plan that extends health benefits to same-sex domestic partners of non-union employees [R3.3].

Taking effect on 1 September 1999 Milwaukee introduced the domestic partner registry, which provided same-sex couples the opportunity to formalize their relationships. The measure was introduced in July 1999. The Domestic Partner Ordinance was repealed 13 October 2009 effective 30 October 2009 [R3.2].

In August 2001, Milwaukee Common Council approved a second contract agreement with the city's largest union, one that extends health and dental coverage and funeral leave benefits to all unmarried couples, not just same-sex ones. It is due to kick in 2002 [R3.1].

In 1999, Madison was the only other Wisconsin entity to recognize same-sex couples.

Couples submit proof of partnership such as a joint bank account or property ownership, pay a US$30 fee and sign a declaration of domestic partnership. For that, they receive a certificate.

The city clerk's office doesn't even maintain an actual registry; the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel's request for the list required a special database search, which two days and US$25 later produced a list of couples.

While the government grants nothing, some private employers do extend health and other benefits to employees with domestic partners. Having a certificate from the city provides official evidence the relationship exists.

Rep. Mark Pocan (D-Madison), the first openly gay man elected to the Wisconsin Legislature, said he plans to reintroduce legislation next year to accomplish a statewide domestic partnership registry that would extend the same benefits of marriage such as insurance, tax breaks, hospital visitation and medical decision-making and property inheritance.

4.

Courts & Tribunals:

On 31 July 2014, the Wisconsin Supreme Court upheld 7-0 the 2009 Domestic Partnership Act establishing a registry system with county clerks for same-sex couples to receive inheritance, hospital visitation and medical leave, unanimously agreeing it did not violate the state's ban on gay marriage ]C4.15], [R4.14].

On 16 August 2013, the Wisconsin Supreme Court scheduled 23 October for oral arguments challenging the constitutionality of the state's domestic partner registry in Julaine K. Appling & Ors v. James E. Doyle & Ors [D4.13], [R4.12].

On 14 June 2013, the Supreme Court issued a statement that it would review the 4th District Court of Appeals decision in Julaine K. Appling & Ors v. James E. Doyle & Ors that the same sex domestic partnership registry does not violate an amendment to the state constitution, but the statement didn't include any explanation why [R4.11].

On 21 December 2012, the Court of Appeals ruled that Wisconsin's same sex domestic partnership registry does not violate an amendment to the state constitution banning gay marriage. The registry gives the right to hospital visits, family medical leave to care for a stricken partner, health benefits under a partner's insurance, and the right to inherit assets when a partner dies [C4.10], [R4.9].

On 17 September 2012, the Wisconsin Supreme Court declined to determine whether state domestic partnership legislation violated the Marriage Amendment to the state constitution by creating a legal status substantially similar to marriage for unmarried individuals until an appeals court has heard the case [R4.8].

On 20 June 2011, Judge Daniel Moeser ruled that the domestic registry law does not create a legal status for partners that is identical or substantially similar to that of marriage and therefore it does not violate the constitutional ban [C4.7], [R4.6].

On 13 May 2011, Governor Scott Walker filed a motion before Dane County Circuit Judge Daniel Moeser seeking to withdraw the defense of the measure establishing a domestic partner registry because he believes the registry is unconstitutional [R4.5].

On 01 October 2010, the ACLU and five gay couples filed a motion asking to intervene in the lawsuit brought by Wisconsin Family Action in August, that seeks to strike down the registry created by lawmakers last year giving same-sex couples some legal rights such as the ability to visit each other in the hospital and take medical leave to care for an ill partner [C4.4], [R4.3].

Previously:

On 03 November 2009, the Wisconsin state supreme court rejected a lawsuit challenging the State's domestic-partner registry [C4.2], [R4.1]. The case was re-filed in the Circuit Court

R1.4 NationalLawReview: Governmental Entities Now Prohibited From Offering Benefits to Domestic Partners of Employees 04 OCT 17
R1.3 PinkNews.co.uk: Gay couples in Wisconsin sign up for domestic partnerships 05 AUG 09
The Advocate: DP Victory in Wisconsin
L1.2 2007-08 Wisconsin Statutes: Chapter 770 Domestic Partnership PDF 16.69kb, (Accessed 08 NOV 09)
R1.1 PinkNews.co.uk: Wisconsin Will Face Challenge to Domestic Partnerships from 'Family' Groups 20 FEB 09
R2.1 Journal Sentinal Online: County Board approves health benefits for domestic partners 28 JUL 11
R3.5 WQOW: City council approves same-sex partnership benefits 25 APR 12
R3.4 Council right to grant same-sex benefits 20 MAR 12
R3.3 PostCrescent: Appleton approves benefits for same-sex domestic partners 08 SEP 11
R3.2 Milwaukee Code of Ordinances: Volume 1, Chapter 111 Domestic Partnership PDF 33.25kb, (Accessed 08 NOV 09).
R3.1 Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel: Milwaukee Votes to Extend Health Benefits to All Unmarried Couples 02 AUG 01
C4.15 Opinion: Julaine K Appling, et al. v. Scott Walker, et al. No. 2011AP1572 PDF 286.96kb, 31 JUL 14
R4.14 LatinPost: Wisconsin Supreme Court Thursday Upholds Same-sex Couples’ Benefits 31 JUL 14
D4.13 Wisconsin Supreme Court: Table of Pending Cases 16 AUG 13 PDF 202.76kb, 16 AUG 13
R4.12 Wisconsin Supreme Court: Table of Pending Cases 202.76kb, 16 AUG 13
R4.11 LGBTQ Nation: Wis. Supreme Court to hear challenge to state’s domestic partner registry 16 JUN 13
C4.10 Decision: Julaine K. Appling & Ors v. James E. Doyle & Ors 2011AP1572 PDF 155.48kb, 20 DEC 12
R4.9 Chicago Tribune: Wisconsin court rules in favor of same-sex domestic registry 21 DEC 12
R4.8 Wisconsin State Jounral: Supreme Court sends domestic partner case back to appeals court 18 SEP 12
C4.7 Appling & Others v. Doyle & Others Case No. 10-CV-4434 PDF 383.97kb, 20 JUN 11
R4.6 Channel3000: Judge Upholds Wisconsin Domestic Partnership Law 20 JUN 11
R4.5 Daily Journal: Wisconsin Governor Walker tells judge he wants to stop defending domestic partner registry law in court 16 MAY 11
C4.4 Appling v. Doyle: Notice of Motion and Motion of Proposed Intervening Defendants for Leave to Intervene 2010 CV004434, PDF 30.97kb, 01 OCT 10
R4.3 ACLU: Couples Seek To Help Defend Lawsuit Challenging Wisconsin’s Domestic Partner Law 01 OCT 10
C4.2 Supreme Court of Wisconsin: Appling v. Doyle No. 2009AP1860–OA PDF 25.47kb 03 NOV 09
R4.1 PinkNews.co.uk: Wisconsin Supreme Court rejects challenge to gay domestic partnerships 04 NOV 09
The Advocate: Victory for Wisconsin Domestic Partnerships 04 NOV 09
Defamation, Libel, Slander Legislation/Cases/References
1.

Courts & Tribunals:

In June 2008, the Wisconsin supreme court rejected a case brought by an antigay activist who claims that an LGBT rights group defamed him [R1.1].

R1.1 The Advocate: Wisconsin Supreme Court Rejects Defamation Lawsuit 06 JUN 08

GayLawNet®™ "Exclusive" Sponsorship of this page IS available
Discrimination Legislation/Cases/References
1.

State

In 1982, Wisconsin became the first state to pass a law prohibiting discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation in the areas of employment (Wisconsin Statutes Sections 111.31-111.395), housing (Section 106.50), public accommodation (Section 106.52) [R1.4], [R1.3].

Chapter 111 Employment Relations, Subchapter II Fair Employment [L1.2]

111.31 Declaration of Policy

(1) [ … ]

(2) It is the intent of the legislature to protect by law the rights of all individuals to obtain gainful employment and to enjoy privileges free from employment discrimination because of age, race, creed, color, disability, marital status, sex, national origin, ancestry, sexual orientation, arrest record, conviction record, military service, or use or nonuse of lawful products off the employer's premises during nonworking hours, and to encourage the full, nondiscriminatory utilization of the productive resources of the state to the benefit of the state, the family, and all the people of the state.


Chapter 106 Apprentice, Employment and Equal Rights Programs, Subchapter III Equal Rights Programs [L1.1]

106.50 Open housing.

(1) INTENT. It is the intent of this section to render unlawful discrimination in housing. It is the declared policy of this state that all persons shall have an equal opportunity for housing regardless of sex, race, color, sexual orientation, disability, religion, national origin, marital status, family status, lawful source of income, age or ancestry and it is the duty of the political subdivisions to assist in the orderly prevention or removal of all discrimination in housing through the powers granted under ss. 66.0125 and 66.1011.

106.52 Public places of accommodation or amusement.

(1) … (2)

(3) PUBLIC PLACE OF ACCOMMODATION OR AMUSEMENT. (a) No person may do any of the following:

1. Deny to another or charge another a higher price than the regular rate for the full and equal enjoyment of any public place of accommodation or amusement because of sex, race, color, creed, disability, sexual orientation, national origin or ancestry.

2.

County:

On 24 April 2014, the Milwaukee County Board voted 12-6 in favor of adding sexual orientation and gender identity and expression to the county's anti-discrimination ordinance [R2.2].

In 1980, Dane County adopted a civil rights ordinance prohibiting sexual orientation discrimination [L2.1].

3.

Cities & Towns

On 21 November 2017, the De Pere City Council reportedly narrowly (5-4) approved a ban on discrimination against transgender and gender non-binary individuals. Effective March 2018, the ordinance prohibits employers, businesses and landlords from discriminating against people based on gender identity and expression, which are not federally protected classes [R3.3].

Madison (Dade) [L3.2] and Milwaukee (Milwaukee) [L3.1] have a civil rights ordinances prohibiting sexual orientation discrimination.

4.

Courts & Tribunals

On 01 August 2017, Dane County Circuit Court Judge Richard Neiss reportedly determined in the case Amy Lynn Photography Studio v. City of Madison that he would issue an order that declares Lawson and her home-based business are not subject to the city's public accommodations ordinance or the state's public accommodations law that might have forced her to photograph same-sex weddings [C4.2], [R4.1].

R1.4 Social Science Research Network: 'The Gay Rights State': Wisconsin's Pioneering Legislation to Prohibit Discrimination Based on Sexual Orientation
R1.3 ILGA: State-Sponsored Homophobia PDF 382.87kb, MAY 08
L1.2 2007-08 Wisconsin Statutes: Chapter 111 Employment Relations, Subchapter II Fair Employment, 111.31 Declaration of Policy (Accessed 08 NOV 09)
L1.1 2007-08 Wisconsin Statutes: Chapter 106 Apprentice, Employment and Equal Rights Programs (Accessed 08 NOV 09)
R2.2 JournalSentinal: Board approves sexual orientation, gender identity protections 25 APR 14
L2.1 Code of Ordinances, Ch. 74, 1986-1987
R3.3 GreenBayPress-Gazette: De Pere passes transgender nondiscrimination ordinance 21 NOV 17
L3.2 Equal Opportunities Ordinance, JUL 97
L3.1 Discrimination Ordinance, Ch. 109-15, 22 DEC 87
C4.2 Case: Amy Lynn Photography Studio v. City of Madison
R4.1 FamilyPolicyAlliance: Wisconsin: Favorable Court Decision for Wedding Photographer 03 AUG 17
Estates, Inheritance, Succession, Property, Wills Legislation/Cases/References
1.

State:

The law in Wisconsin does not give any automatic inheritance rights to an unmarried partner [R1.1].

R1.1 Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel: Same-sex couples who want equal access to homes, finances must document it in court 03 OCT 03
Gender Identity, Intersex,
Transgender, Transexual

[?]
Legislation/Cases/References
1.

Cities & Towns

On 21 November 2017, the De Pere City Council reportedly narrowly (5-4) approved a ban on discrimination against transgender and gender non-binary individuals. Effective March 2018, the ordinance prohibits employers, businesses and landlords from discriminating against people based on gender identity and expression, which are not federally protected classes [R1.1].

2.

Courts & Tribunals

On 25 August 2017, the Kenosha Unified School District No. 1 Board of Education filed a Petition for a Writ of Certiorari in the US Supreme Court seeking to challenge the US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit affirmation of the District Court ruling allowing boys and girls to use bathrooms consistent with their gender identity (see below) [R2.10].

On 30 May 2017, a three-judge panel of the US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit unanimously affirmed a lower court's preliminary ruling that F2M transgender boy Ashton Whitaker, 17, must be allowed to use the boys' bathrooms at the George Nelson Tremper High School in Kenosha, Wisconsin [C2.9], [R2.8].

On 22 September 2016, US District Judge Pamela Pepper signed an order granting a temprorary injunction, ruling that the Kenosha Unified School District must allow F2M transgender student Ashton Whitaker to use bathrooms consistent with his gender identity while his lawsuit progresses through the courts [C2.7], [R2.6].

On 19 September 2016, US District Judge Pamela Pepper rejected a motion by the Kenosha Unified School District to dismiss the discrimination case filed by F2M transgender student Ashton Whitaker [R2.6].

On 26 March 2012, the US Supreme Court reportedly would not hear a case against the state of Wisconsin after lower courts ruled that the state's law banning medically necessary treatment for transgender people in prison is unconstitutional, allowing the lower courts' rulings to stand [R2.5].

On 05 August 2011, the 7th US Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a ruling striking down the Wisconsin Inmate Sex Change Prevention Act banning publicly funded hormone therapy and sexual reassignment surgery for transgender inmates, saying denying the treatment amounted to cruel and unusual punishment [C2.4], [R2.3].

Previously:

On 31 March 2010, Judge Charles Clevert in the US District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin ruled a unique Wisconsin law that prohibits transgender inmates from receiving taxpayer-funded hormone therapy, unconstitutional and unenforceable. The ruling does not grant all inmates access to hormones or surgery, but enables doctors to decide whether transgender inmates can receive care [R2.2].


In 1994, Jay Ball, a man, underwent complete sexual reassignment surgery and then petitioned the Circuit Court of Outagamie County requesting and receiving an amended birth certificate her new name of J’Noel Ball [C2.1].

R1.1 GreenBayPress-Gazette: De Pere passes transgender nondiscrimination ordinance 21 NOV 17
C2.11 Petition for a Writ of Certiorari: Kenosha Unified School District No. 1 Board of Education and Sue Saviglio-Jervis v. Ashton Whitaker PDF 25 AUG 17
R2.10 WashingtonBlade: Trans bathroom access (again) reaches Supreme Court 25 AUG 17
C2.9 Opinion: Ashton Whitaker, et al. v. Kenosha Unified School District No. 1 Board of Education, et al. No. 16-3522 PDF 303.96kb 30 MAY 17
R2.8 ReutersUS: U.S. appeals court sides with transgender student in bathroom case 30 MAY 17
C2.7 Decision and Order: Ashton Whitaker v. Kenosha Unified School District No. 1 Board of Educaton & Anor N0. 2:16-cv-00943 PDF 131.49kb 22 SEP 16
R2.6 Milwaukee-WisconsinJournalSentinel: Judge grants transgender Kenosha student access to bathroom
R2.5 The Advocate: Supreme Court Won't Consider Wisconsin Antitransgender Law 26 MAR 12
C2.4 Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals: Andrea Fields et al v. Judy P Smith Nos. 10-2339 & 10-2446, PDF 124.77kb, 05 AUG 11
R2.3 wislawhournal: Transgender inmates win appeal over treatments 05 AUG 11
R2.2 365Gay.com: Transgender inmates have right to therapy 02 APR 10
C2.1 Stanford University: In the Matter of the Estate of Marshall G. Gardiner, Deceased [273 Kan. 191; 42 P.3d 120 (2002) PDF 87.95kb, 28 MAY 08
Hate Crimes Legislation/Cases/References
1.

State:

In 1988, hate crimes based on sexual orientation became an aggravating circumstance [R1.2].

Chapter 939 Crimes – General Provisions, Subchapter IV Penalties [L1.1]

939.645 Penalty; crimes committed against certain people or property.

(1) If a person does all of the following, the penalties for the underlying crime are increased as provided in sub. (2):

(a) Commits a crime under chs. 939 to 948.

(b) Intentionally selects the person against whom the crime under par. (a) is committed or selects the property that is damaged or otherwise affected by the crime under par. (a) in whole or in part because of the actor’s belief or perception regarding the race, religion, color, disability, sexual orientation, national origin or ancestry of that person or the owner or occupant of that property, whether or not the actor's belief or perception was correct.

(2) […] (4)

R1.2 ILGA: State-Sponsored Homophobia PDF 382.87kb, MAY 08
L1.1 2007-08 Wisconsin Statutes: Chapter 939, Crimes – General Provisions (Accessed 08 NOV 09)
Health, Medical Legislation/Cases/References
1.

State:

On 21 September 2017, Wisconsin Statute § 66.0510 was created which prohibits all municipalities, counties, and school districts from offering employee benefit plan coverage to (unmarried) domestic partners of employees as of 01 January 2018 and only permits offering such employee benefit plans to their employees, and the spouses and dependent children of such employees [R1.2].

On 14 October 2014, the Wisconsin Department of Employee Trust Funds said it has opened a 30-day benefits enrollment period ending 14 November 2014, for members who are married to same-sex spouses. Benefit changes can be made effective from 06 October by submitting a health insurance change application form or making an online request for changes. After the 14 November deadline members will need to wait until the next open enrollment period or until the time of a qualifying event such as a birth or adoption [R1.1].

2.

County:

On 23 January 2014, the Rock County Board approved a resolution 20-7 letting county employees in same-sex domestic partnerships share health care benefits with their significant others starting from 01 March [D2.2], [R2.1].

R1.2 NationalLawReview: Governmental Entities Now Prohibited From Offering Benefits to Domestic Partners of Employees 04 OCT 17
R1.1 WisconsinStateJournal: Wisconsin state benefits agency opens 30-day enrollment for same-sex spouses 15 OCT 14
D2.2 Resolution: Approving Health Insurance Benefits for Employees in Same-Sex Relatiopnships Who Meet Eligibity Requirements No. 14-1B-498 PDF 241.40kb, 23 JAN 14
R2.1 GazetteXtra: Rock County Board approves same-sex benefits resolution 24 JAN 14
Homosexuality, Sodomy Legislation/Cases/References
1.

State:

In 1983, the law in Wisconsin permitted consensual sex between same-sex couples, having been amended by the legislature.

   
Marriage Legislation/Cases/References
1.

State:

On 27 May 2015, the Oneida Business Committee voted unanimously to recognize marriages between members of the same sex, amending Oneida law (Marriage Law Amendments) to define marriage as between “spouses” in place of “husband and wife”, effective 10 June [R1.10]

On 13 October 2014, Governor Scott Walker announced that hundreds of same-sex marriages performed in June will be recognized by the state, ending uncertainty for those couples and likely putting a stop to a federal lawsuit filed over the issue [R1.9].

On 04 September 2014, the the Seventh Court of Appeals unanimously upheld lower court rulings finding bans against same-sex marriage unconstitutional [C2.23], [R2.22].

Previously:

The law in Wisconsin refers specifically to "husband and wife" [R1.8].

Chapter 765 Marriage, 765.001 Title, intent and construction of chs. 765 to 768 [L1.7]

(1) … ]

(2) [ … ] Under the laws of this state, marriage is a legal relationship between 2 equal persons, a husband and wife, who owe to each other mutual responsibility and support. [ … ]


In November 2006, voters in the state approved a constitutional ban on gay marriage [R1.6].

In December 2005, the Wisconsin state senate approved an amendment to ban same-sex marriage and Vermont-style civil unions over objections that it could strip unmarried couples of health care benefits and other legal recognitions. The assembly is expected to pass the amendment before the proposal could go to the public for a final vote in November [R1.5].

Previously:

All three attempts in 1996, 1997 and 1998 to pass an anti-gay marriage bill have failed.

The State Assembly passed 68–29 a Bill defining marriage as a contract between a man and a woman [R1.4]. The Senate passed the Bill 22–10. However, Gov. Jim Doyle has vetoed the bill [R1.3] and the state Assembly failed by one vote short of the two-thirds majority required to override the veto [R1.2].


In July 2008, the law made it a criminal offense to enter into a marriage outside the state if that marriage were illegal in Wisconsin. The law was passed decades ago to prevent underage couples from crossing state lines to marry, but it could be used against same-sex couples [R1.1].

The penalty is a fine of up to $10,000, nine months in prison, or both [R1.1].

2.

Courts & Tribunals:

On 01 August 2017, Dane County Circuit Court Judge Richard Neiss reportedly determined in the case Amy Lynn Photography Studio v. City of Madison that he would issue an order that declares Lawson and her home-based business are not subject to the city's public accommodations ordinance or the state's public accommodations law that might have forced her to photograph same-sex weddings [C2.34], [R2.33].

On 27 March 2015, the State agreed to pay the ACLU $1.055 million in legal costs for the State's failed attempt to defend its ban on same-sex marriage [C2.32], [R2.31].

On 18 December 2014, following the Governor announcing that the State would recognise the marriages of approximately 550 same-sex couples married between 06 June and 13 June [R1.9], Plaintiffs in Kiersten Bloechl-Karlsen, et at., v. Scott Walker No. 14-cv-00627-BBC, filed a Notice of Voluntary Dismissal Without Prejudice in the US District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin [C2.30], [R2.29].

On 06 October 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court denied review of five cases from Indiana, Oklahoma, Utah, Virginia and Wisconsin seeking the freedom to marry, leaving in force the five favorable marriage rulings reached in three federal appellate courts, meaning that soon, as many as 60% of the American people will be living in freedom-to-marry states [C2.28], [R2.27].

On 29 September 2014, the nine justices of the US Supreme Court likely met to discuss whether they should take up any or all of the seven petitions before the Court from Indiana, Oklahoma, Utah, Virginia and Wisconsin on the issue of marriage equality. (The only public word from the Court after the conference will be its order list. The list could be released earlier but likely will issue on 06 October) [R2.26].

On 15 September 2014, the US Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit, stayed its 04 September ruling finding bans against same-sex marriage unconstitutional pending disposition by the US Supreme Court [C2.25], [R2.24].

On 04 September 2014, the the Seventh Court of Appeals unanimously upheld lower court rulings finding bans against same-sex marriage unconstitutional [C2.23], [R2.22].

On 25 July 2014, the US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit announced that the date for oral arguments in the Indiana and Wisconsin equal marriage cases had been set down for 26 August. The Court denied a request by the States for an en banc 10-member hearing, that will be before the customary 3-judge panel [R2.21].

On 16 July 2014,the US Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit, " … on its own motion, ORDERS that the oral argument in this appeal, scheduled for Wednesday, August 13, 2014, is VACATED. A new oral argument date will be set by separate court order." [C2.20], [R2.19].

On 14 July 2014, the US Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit ordered the Indiana and Wisconsin marriage equality cases be orally argued on 13 August 2014 [C2.18], [R2.17].

On 10 July 2014, State officials in Wisconsin filed a notice of appeal to the US Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit in Wolf v. Walker, the federal challenge to the state's same-sex marriage ban [C2.16].

On 30 June 2014, Court Commissioner Grace Flynn dismissed a lawsuit filed by Robert Braun alleging the decision of Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele and three other county clerks to issue marriage licenses after US District Court Judge Barbara Crabb struck down the state's ban on same-sex marriage violated the public's civil rights and ignored the constitutional ban on same-sex marriage, ruling there was no valid claim stated [R2.15].

On 13 June 2014, Judge Barbara Crabb in the US District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin granted a permanent injunction enjoining state officers from denying a marriage license to a couple because both applicants for the license are the same sex and granted a stay of the injunction pending the conclusion of any appeal [C2.14], [R2.13].

On 06 June 2014, US District Court Judge Barbara Crabb ruled that the voter-approved state constitutional amendment, which passed with 59 percent support in 2006, violated the US Constitution. It was not immediately clear whether same-sex couples could begin marrying and an appeal was likely [C2.12], [R2.11].

On 22 May 2014, a direct challenge to the State's constitutional ban on gay marriage filed by Katherine M Halopka-Ivery and Linda M Halopka-Ivery 16 April 2014 was denied by the Wisconsin Supreme Court. [R2.10].

On 16 April 2014, Katherine Halopka-Ivery and Linda Halopka-Ivery filed a petition challenging the constitutionality of the gay marriage ban, directly with the Wisconsin Supreme Court, bypassing the trial and appellate courts [C2.9], [R2.8].

On 24 March 2014, US District Judge Barbara Crabb denied a motion by the state to stay the case involving the constitutionality of Wisconsin's marriage amendment [R2.7].

On 21 March 2014, US District Magistrate Judge Stephen L Crocker set a 25 August trial date in the Virginia Wolf and Carol Schmacher v. Scott Walker marriage equality case, allocating 5 days to hear arguments in the case [C2.6], [R2.5].

On 03 February 2014, the American Civil Liberties Union filed a complaint in the US District Court for the western district of Wisconsin on behalf four same-sex couples challenging the ban on same-sex marriage [C2.4], [R2.3].

In June 2010, Supreme Court Justice Michael Gableman for the Court, found that the 2006 statewide referendum amending the constitution to ban same-sex marriage and civil unions was constitutional [R2.2].

On 14 May 2009, the Wisconsin supreme court said that it would review whether the 2006 constitutional ban on same-sex marriage was properly put to voters [R2.1].

R1.10 GreenBayPressGazette: Oneida Tribe legalizing same-sex marriage
R1.9 PostCrescent: Gay marriages from June will be recognized 13 OCT 14
R1.8 Marshfield News-Herald: Lesbian couple will apply for marriage license Friday 13 FEB 03
L1.7 2007-08 Wisconsin Statutes: Chapter 765 Marriage (Accessed 08 NOV 09)
R1.6 PinkNews.co.uk: Wisconsin Will Face Challenge to Domestic Partnerships from 'Family' Groups 20 FEB 09
R1.5 The Advocate: Wisconsin Lawmakers Approve Same-sex Marriage Ban 09 DEC 05
R1.4 Associated Pres: Assembly passes bill defining marriage between man and woman 23 OCT 03
R1.3 Associated Pres: Wisconsin Governor Vetoes Bill Defining Marriage as One Man, One Woman 07 NOV 03
Associated Pres: Senate OKs Law Defining Marriage 05 NOV 03
R1.2 Associated Pres: Wisconsin Marriage Bill Veto Stands 13 NOV 03
R1.1 The Advocate: Wisconsin Gay Couples Could Face Jail for Marrying in California 03 JUL 08
The Advocate: Wisconsin Gays Face Fine, Jail Time for Marrying in California 16 JUL 08

Courts & Tribunals

C2.34 Case: Amy Lynn Photography Studio v. City of Madison
R2.33 FamilyPolicyAlliance: Wisconsin: Favorable Court Decision for Wedding Photographer 03 AUG 17
C2.32 Stipulation and Agreement: Virginia Wolf, et al., v. Scott Walker, et al. No. 14-CV-64 PDF 85.65kb, 27 MAR 15
R2.31 Isthmus: State of Wisconsin to pay more than $1 million to ACLU in attorneys’ fees for same-sex marriage ban case 27 MAR 15
C2.30 Notice: Kiersten Bloechl-Karlsen, et at., v. Scott Walker No. 14-cv-00627-BBC PDF 107.92kb 18 DEC 14
R2.29 LGBTQ Nation: ACLU dismisses Wisconsin lawsuit seeking recognition of same-sex marriages 18 DEC 14
C2.28 Orders: Order List: 574 U.S. PDF 433.43kb, 06 OCT 14
R2.27 FreedomToMarry: SCOTUS denies review of marriage cases, bringing the freedom to marry to 5 states 06 OCT 14
R2.26 GayNZ: Supreme Court discusses marriage 30 SEP 14
C2.25 Order: Marilyn Rae Basking, et al., v. Penny Bogan, et al., Virginia Wolf, et al., v. Scott Walker, et al. Nos. 14-2386, 14-2387, 14-2388, 14-2526 PDF 1.27MB, 15 SEP 14
R2.24 PinkNews: Indiana court stays ruling on same-sex marriage 15 SEP 14
C2.23 Opinion: Baskin, et al. v. Bogan. et al. and Wolf, et al. v. Walker, et al. Nos. 14-2386 to 14-2388, 14-2526 PDF 294.20kb, 04 SEP 14
R2.22 EqualityOnTrial: Seventh Circuit rules marriage bans in Indiana and Wisconsin are unconstitutional 04 SEP 14
R2.21 EdgeOnTheNet: 7th Circuit Sets Hearing on Gay Marriage Ban 25 JUL 14
C2.20 Order: Marilyn Rae Baskin et al., v. Penny Bogan, et al., Midori Fujii, et al. v. Commissioner for the Indiana State Department of Revenue, Pamela Lee, et al. v. Brian Abbott, et al., Virginia Wolf, et al. v. Scott Walker, et al. Nos. 14-2386, 2387, 2388, 2526, 16 JUL 14
R2.19 EqualityOnTrial: Seventh Circuit cancels oral arguments, Utah asks SCOTUS for stay 17 JUL 14
C2.18 Notice of Oral Argument: Marilyn Rae Baskin et al., v. Penny Bogan, et al., Midori Fujii, et al. v. Commissioner for the Indiana State Department of Revenue, Pamela Lee, et al. v. Brian Abbott, et al., Virginia Wolf, et al. v. Scott Walker, et al. Nos. 14-2386, 2387, 2388, 2526 PDF 146.56kb, 14 JUL 14
R2.17 EqualityOnTrial: Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals sets oral arguments in Indiana and Wisconsin same-sex marriage cases for August 13 14 JUL 14
C2.16 Notice of Appeal: Virginia Wolf and Carol Schumacher, et al., v. Scott Walk, et al. Case No. 14-CV-00064-BBC, 10 JUL 14
R2.15 WISN: Lawsuit against Abele for same-sex marriage support dismissed 30 JUN 14
C2.14 Opinion and Order: Virginia Wolf and Carol Schumacher et al. v. Scott Walker et al. No. 14-cv-64-bbc PDF 107.31kb, 13 JUN 14
R2.13 The Advocate: Same-Sex Marriages End in Wisconsin, for Now 13 JUN 14
C2.12 Opinion and Order: Virginia Wolf & Carol Schumacher et al. v. Scott Walker et al. 14-cv-64-bbc PDF 432.37kb, 06 JUN 14
R2.11 TheAdvocate: Judge Strikes Down 2006 Marriage Ban 06 JUN 14
R2.10 TheChippewaHerald: State Supreme Court rejects same-sex marriage petition 27 MAY 14
C2.9 Petition for Declaratory nd Injunctive Relief: Katherine M Halopka-Ivery and Linda M Halopka-Ivery v. Scott Walker, et al. No. 2014AP000839 - OA PDF 1.81MB, 16 APR 14
R2.8 Journal Sentinel: Milwaukee lesbian couple challenges Wisconsin's same-sex marriage ban 16 APR 14
R2.7 Channel3000: Judge denies motion to stay marriage case 26 MAR 14
C2.6 Preliminary Pretrial Conference Order: Virginia Wolf and Carol Schmacher v. Scott Walker 3:14-cv-00064 PDF 175.16kb, 21 MAR 14
R2.5 OnTopMagazine: Wisconsin Gay Marriage Trial Set For August 25 MAR 14
C2.4 Complaint: Wolf and Schumacher v. Walker PDF 79.92kb, 03 FEB 14
R2.3 EdgeOnTheNet: Same-Sex Couples Challenge Wisconsin Gay Marriage Ban 03 FEB 14
R2.2 365Gay.com: Wisconsin Supreme Court upholds ban on gay marriage 30 JUN 10
R2.1 The Advocate: Wisconsin Gay Marriage Ban May Go Down 08 JUL 09
The Advocate: Wisconsin High Court to Review Marriage Ban 15 MAY 09
Parenting, Adoption, Fostering Legislation/Cases/References
1.

State:

State law prohibits second-parent adoptions [R1.3].

2007-08 Wisconsin Statutes, Chapter 48 Children's Code [L1.2]

48.82 Who may adopt.

(1) The following persons are eligible to adopt a minor if they are residents of this state:

(a) A husband and wife jointly, or either the husband or wife if the other spouse is a parent of the minor.

(b) An unmarried adult.


On 25 August 2015, the Office of Vital Records was reported to have issued a birth certificate, along with others, that recognizes both Kami Young and Karina Willes as legal guardians of their one-year-old daughter Olivia. Young and Willes married in Minnesota in 2013. Meanwhile, Madison mother Chelsea Torres and her wife Jessamy Torres await theirs for six-month-old son Asher, which is the subject of a federal lawsuit due to be heard February 2016 [C1.2], [R1.1].

2.

Courts & Tribunals:

On 14 September 2016, District Judge Barbara B Crabb ruled that same-sex couples who conceived a child through artificial insemination, and gave birth from the time gay marriage became legal in Wisconsin through 02 May 2016 should get a two-parent birth certificate [C2.5], [R2.4].

On 04 October 2015, the 2nd District Court of Appeals affirmed the lower court's dismissal on procedural grounds of the petition of S.R. and C.L. seeking a declaration that following legalization of same-sex marriage, the paternity statutes using gender-specific terms are unconstitutional and that the non-biological partner Christie L is the child's second parent. The Court found that the petition was filed as an adoption action though what they really sought which was a declaratory judgment or paternity action, which requires payment of a fee and service of the petition on the Attorney General [C2.3], [R2.2].

On 10 September 2014, Dane County Circuit Court Judge Shelley Gaylord ruled that the marriage of a lesbian couple Teresa Riley and Kat Riley who wed in Iowa was constitutionally valid and that such marriages must be recognized under state adoption laws, approving the couple's adoption of their two children [R2.1].

On 13 August 2014, Judge Julie Genovese granted Sarah Davis and Heather Schaller of Madison what may have been the first adoption by a same-sex married couple in Dane County, and possibly in the state [R2.1]

R1.3 Chicago Tribune: Same-Sex and Parents Too 23 JUN 02
L1.2 2007-08 Wisconsin Statutes: Chapter 48 Children's Code (Accessed 19 NOV 09)
C1.2 Complaint: Chelsea Torres and Jessamy Torres v. Kitty Rhoades No. 15-cv-288 PDF 145.84kb, 13 MAY 15
R1.1 WKOW.com: Wisconsin issues birth certificate recognizing same-sex parents, Madison couple continues legal battle to receive theirs 25 AUG 15
2. Courts & Tribunals
C2.5 Opinion: Chelsea Torres and Jessamy Torres v. Linda Seemeyer PDF 141.63kb 14 SEP 16
R2.4 BringMeTheNews: Same-sex couple in Wisconsin will get both names on child’s birth certificate after legal battle 15 SEP 16
C2.3 Decision: S.R. and C.L. v. Circuit Court for Winnebago County 2015AP000219-AC PDF 272.28kb 04 NOV 15
R2.2 NewsTimes: Court: Judge properly tossed gay couple's parental request 04 NOV 15
R2.1 news8000: Judges grant adoptions by same-sex couples 11 SEP 14
Taxation Legislation/Cases/References
1.

State:

On 09 October 2013, though the State doesn't recognise same-sex marriages, the Wisconsin Department of Revenue released a tax form for married same-sex couples, splitting up a couple's federal tax filing so they can file as individuals in the State [D1.1]

D1.1 Schedule S: Allocation of Income to be Reported by Same-Sex Couples Filing a Joint Federal Return 10 121.86kb, 09 OCT 13

GayLawNet®™ "Exclusive" Sponsorship of this page IS available