Judge Strikes Louisiana Law Requiring Birth Certificates for Marriage
A federal judge has permanently blocked a Louisiana law that prevented foreign-born U.S. citizens from getting married if they couldn’t produce a birth certificate.
U.S. District Judge Ivan Lemelle’s ruling resolves a lawsuit Lafayette resident Viet Anh Vo filed last year after he and his U.S.-born fiancee had their application for a marriage license rejected two weeks before their wedding.
The permanent injunction benefits anyone whom the 2016 law prevented from obtaining a marriage license.
The judge initially blocked enforcement of the statute in March, pending Tuesday’s final ruling. Lawmakers responded in June by allowing marriage license applicants who can’t produce a birth certificate to get a judicial waiver. But Lemelle said that new law, which took effect on Aug. 1, preserved other unconstitutional provisions, such as passport and visa requirements, that apply only to foreign-born citizens.