‘Govt Will Determine Its Next Steps In 21 Days’

November 23, 2018

“The judgment of the Court is being considered and the Government will determine its next steps within the prescribed period of 21 days in which any application for leave to appeal must be made,” Attorney General Kathy-Lynn Simmons said today.

This follows after Bermuda’s Court of Appeal handed down their ruling this morning [Nov 23], with the Court dismissing the Government’s appeal, marking the latest court victory for same sex marriage.

Today’s ruling was, in effect, the third court ruling in favour of it, as same sex marriage was initially legalised in Bermuda following a Supreme Court decision in May 2017, then the Court ruled in favour of it again in June 2018 when a challenge was brought to the Domestic Partnership Act, and this morning the Court dismissed the Government’s appeal to the latest ruling.

Having been through the Supreme Court and Appeals Court, the final possible place of appeal is now the Privy Council in England.

Bermuda rainbow gavel timeline 600px Nov 23 2018

Following today’s ruling, Attorney General Kathy-Lynn Simmons said, “The judgment of the Court is being considered and the Government will determine its next steps within the prescribed period of 21 days in which any application for leave to appeal must be made.”

Minister of Home Affairs Walter Roban, added: “In preparing the Domestic Partnership Act, the Government invited and took into account a wide range of views, including submissions from OUTBermuda. The Government enacted the DPA to achieve a balance between passionately held different beliefs within Bermuda and to provide a comprehensive legal framework to accommodate such beliefs.

“Bermuda is the first English speaking country in the Region to do so. As the Court of Appeal observed, this case was not about the differing views on same sex marriage but about a law, properly passed in the Legislature and whether it offends the Constitution.

“In considering whether to appeal this case, we must weigh the significant implications for the expectation of Bermudians that laws passed by their elected representatives and that reflect their democratically expressed views will be upheld.

“There are important issues at stake in this case and this Government will fully consider the legal position and the fundamental Constitutional issues in coming to a decision on next steps.”

The full judgement follows below [PDF here]:

click here same sex marriage

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