Roach v. Roach n.k.a. Silverwolf
Lambda Legal represents Julio Silverwolf (formerly Julia Roach) in a lawsuit brought by Lawrence Roach, who argued that he no longer should have to pay alimony because Julio transitioned from female to male. The couple had been married for 18 years during which time Silverwolf (then Julia) did not work outside the home, at Lawrence's request. Part of the divorce proceedings included a nonmodifiable obligation to pay alimony until death or remarriage of the wife. The ex-husband argued that Silverwolf's transition was the legal equivalent of his ex-wife's death and therefore ended his alimony obligation. The Sixth Circuit Court for Pinellas County rejected the ex-husband's argument and upheld alimony for Silverwolf. At the same time, the judge also said Silverwolf would not be recognized as a man under Florida statutes — a blow for the transgender community in the state.
Lambda Legal's Impact
This case is part of Lambda Legal's transgender rights work to help demonstrate how damaging it can be when transgender people are treated unfairly under the law.
- January 2007 Motion to stay discovery granted.
- February 2007 Motion for judgment on pleadings filed.
- March 2007 Sixth Circuit Court for Pinellas County upholds alimony for Silverwolf, but does not recognize him as a man under Florida statutes.