Gay Marriage

Montana Supreme Court Denies Same-Sex Benefits Claim

State has constitutional amendment denying gay marriage recognition

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Same-sex couples in Montana — which has a constitutional amendment prohibiting them from marrying—were denied a request for equal benefits by the state's supreme court on Monday, although the court left open the possibility of a future ruling that could grant at least some of the sought benefits.

The Montana Supreme Court, in a 4-3 decision, rejected a request by same-sex couples to be given equal benefits to married opposite-sex couples in the state because the couples' argument that the state's entire "statutory scheme" should be found unconstitutional was too broad of a request.

Instead, Chief Justice Mike McGrath wrote, "It is this Court's opinion that Plaintiffs should be given the opportunity, if they choose to take it, to amend the complaint and to refine and specify the general constitutional challenges they have proffered."