A Sydney lawyer has made a magnanimous offer to the straight Canberra couple who said they’d seek a divorce if Australia ever moved to legalise marriage equality, saying he’ll act on a pro-bono basis to assist them in their endeavour.
Michael Tiyce of the aptly-titled Tiyce & Lawyers told News.com.au he was moved by the plight of Nick and Sarah Jensen, who in 2015 promised to torpedo their state-sanctioned relationship if same-sex attracted Australians were ever afforded equal marriage rights.
At the time, Nick Jensen penned a piece for Canberra CityNews saying “marriage is the union of a man and a woman before a community in the sight of God,” and that “any attempt to change the definition of marriage by law is not something in which we are able to partake.”
Referencing his firm’s work with queer clients, Tiyce said “I thought offering assistance to Nick and Sarah would be an excellent way of reaching out across communities with my family law expertise, because quite simply they are going to need it.”
The problem stems from a single idiosyncracy in the Jensens’ case: while they have previously stated their desire to remain a de facto couple after their divorce – citing the fact God would still count them as married – parties seeking to legally bin their marriage are required to spend twelve months separated before sealing the deal.
Ironically, Tiyce said a similar barrier is faced by same-sex couples who married overseas only to seek a divorce in Australia. As their marriages haven’t been recognised here after 2004, it’s often difficult to definitively prove that a relationship has definitively ended.
Speaking to Mail Online about the ramifications of the vote, Jensen said “we just need to see the legislation and if it all goes that way.” It is currently unclear if the Jensens have accepted Tiyce’s offer to help ’em split the hell up.
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Image: Nick Jensen / Facebook