Virginia Supreme Court recognizes gay couples in divorce law

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — The Supreme Court of Virginia has ruled that a person doesn’t need to pay alimony to a former spouse if the payee is in a new relationship with a member of the same sex.

The decision clarifies a section of Virginia’s divorce law which states that alimony payments can be cut off if the payee remarries or has been cohabiting with another person for at least a year.

The case stemmed from the 2008 divorce of Michael Luttrell and Samantha Cucco. Luttrell had agreed to pay alimony to Cucco for eight years, but sought to end payments in 2014 because Cucco was engaged to a new partner.

Cucco had argued the situation didn’t qualify as cohabitation because she was in a relationship with someone of the same sex.

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