NY Judge Grants Estate to Surviving Partner of Same-Sex “Marriage” Effected in Canada

Thu Feb 5, 2009 - 12:15 pm EST

By Kathleen Gilbert

NEW YORK, February 5, 2009 ( - Despite the fact that same-sex "marriage" is illegal in New York, a New York Judge has ruled that a man will receive the estate of his deceased male partner, whom he had "wed" in Canada eight months earlier.

Manhattan Surrogate Court Judge Kristin Booth Glen ruled that J. Craig Leiby was entitled, as "the surviving spouse," to the estate of his homosexual partner, H. Kenneth Ranftle, who died either of a heart attack or lung cancer. Leiby, 65, and Ranftle, 54, had "married" in Montreal in June 2008.

The decision is the latest in a series of decision in New York which have set legal precedent in the state in favor of same-sex "marriage."  New York court decisions have recently granted same-sex couples who were “married” out of state employee benefits that are comparable those enjoyed by married couples. They have also recognized same-sex “divorces.” The first such "divorce" in the state was also granted to a couple "wed" in Canada.

In both of the states where same-sex "marriage" is legal, Massachusetts and Connecticut, the change was effected by the judiciary and not the legislature.

Governor Paterson had issued a "recognition of same-sex marriage" directive last year that ordered state courts to recognize all same-sex "marriages" performed outside the state. The directive was challenged in the New York Supreme Court the following September, but the case was dismissed.

See related articles:

New York Appellate Court Approves Recognition of Out-of-State Same-sex "Marriages"

Homosexual "Marriage" Trickling Down to New York as Judge Recognizes Same-Sex Divorce

New York Judge Permits Lesbian Divorce Despite State’s Non-Recognition of Same-sex "Marriage"

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