HOUSTON – An attorney says a Texas judge plans to void the marriage of a transgender widow, preventing her from getting the death benefits of her firefighter husband who died last year battling a blaze.
Edward Burwell said Tuesday that state District Judge Randy Clapp announced his plan in a draft ruling.
Burwell is an attorney for an ex-wife of firefighter Thomas Araguz III. The judge will rule in a lawsuit filed by the Araguz's mother that the ex-wife also joined. The suit claimed Nikki Araguz should receive no benefits because she was born a man and Texas doesn't recognize same-sex marriages.
Burwell says the ruling pleased his client. Nikki Araguz's attorney said he didn't want to comment until the ruling was final.
The widow says she's "devastated" by the judge's decision.