These summaries were prepared by McGuireWoods LLP lawyer Thomas E. Spahn. They are based on the letter opinions issued by the Virginia State Bar. Any editorial comments reflect Mr. Spahn's current personal views, and not the opinions of the Virginia State Bar, McGuireWoods or its clients. 
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19-Judge Conflicts

Although judges' performance of marriage "is a discretionary function rather than a mandatory function, "they must avoid "bias or prejudice" and "the public must also perceive judges to be impartial." Judges required by their job or acting within their discretion to perform marriages for opposite-sex couples must also perform marriages for same-sex couples – even if they limit their performance of marriages "exclusively for family and friends."

Copyright 2000, Thomas E. Spahn