(Memphis) A DMV worker stood strong turning away Sergio Smart who wanted a driver’s license.
He brought all his identification including his marriage license to his husband, Matthew.
The two were married in Iowa, one of the few states where it is legal.
Sergio is from Mexico and in the country legally.
All his IDs have his maiden name and the DMV says that keeps him from getting a driver’s license.
The state not only doesn’t recognize the marriage certificate, but also not the “name change” as legal.
Chris Sanders of the Equal Rights Project says it’s unfortunate, “I think it’s unnecessary. I think administratively the state could not change its stance overall by recognizing documents from the federal government and other states.”
Sanders says his organization is looking into the legality of Tennessee’s law which has put a damper on the excitement for Matt and Sergio.
“I’m not sure where we go from here”, said Smart.
After News Channel 3 first told of their plight advice rolled in from across the state.
The couple ended up visiting the Shelby County courthouse and were immediately recognized.
“The clerks had seen the story on channel 3, and they said let us help you”, said Smart.
Sergio testified before a judge who granted his name change, and issued an order commanding the DMV to allow him to get a license in his husband’s name.