Transgender man may appeal divorce ruling

On behalf of The Walters Law Group, Ltd. posted in Family Law on Saturday, April 20, 2013.

Illinois residents may have heard about the unusual case of an Arizona man who became famous as the “pregnant man” after giving birth to three children. The man’s attorneys have recently announced that he may seek an appeal following a denial of a divorce decree by a judge in late March. The judge stated that the transgender man failed to show that he was a partner in a heterosexual marriage prior to seeking the divorce and was therefore not entitled to a legal dissolution.

The 39-year-old man was born biologically as a female but began living as a man during his 20s. He underwent breast-removal surgery and changed his name. However, the female reproductive organs were never removed, and the “man” gave birth to three children with his current partner using artificial insemination.

Same-sex marriages are not recognized as valid in Arizona. Consequently, when the man sought a divorce from his current wife in order to marry a new girlfriend, the judge ruled that there was never a legally-established marriage due to the fact that the individual was actually a female. However, the man has changed his gender on his driver’s license and passport. The judge claims that undergoing a double mastectomy is not enough to qualify as a “sex change” operation.

Those who are seeking a divorce under any circumstances may run into obstacles and pitfalls. For some, it is helpful to consult a family law attorney who may be able to help the person understand his or her rights under the law and the best way to seek a divorce. A family law attorney may also be able to help individuals reach a reasonable divorce settlement with former partners regarding division of property and child custody and support.

Source: Chicago Tribune, “Arizona ‘pregnant man’ to appeal ruling rejecting divorce,” David Schwartz, April 2, 2013