On October 30, 1999, Melanie Davis, then known as David Paul Summers, and Angela Summers married in Brown County, Indiana. The marriage produced one child, K.S., who was born in July 2005. At some point, Davis was diagnosed with “gender dysphoria.” Thereafter, on May 31, 2005, Davis filed a petition in Marion Circuit Court to change his name from David Paul Summers to Melanie Lauren Artemisia Davis. His petition also requested that the gender on his birth certificate be changed from male to female. The Marion Circuit Court granted the change of name on September 12, 2005. However, that court did not order Davis’s gender to be changed on the birth certificate until it issued an amended order in his case three years later, on October 21, 2008. In this amended order, the court directed that the gender (sic) designation on Davis’s birth certificate “be amended from Male to Female in order to conform to her identity, legal name and appearance.”
In 2012, Davis filed a petition for dissolution of marriage in Monroe Circuit Court. Summers did not oppose the petition. On January 23, 2013, the trial court approved of the parties’ agreed provisional order. Pursuant to the provisional order, Davis was granted custody of K.S. and Summers was ordered to pay child support. The court then on its own motion held that the marriage was void as of the date of the “gender change” on the birth certificate because same-sex marriages are illegal in Indiana.
Davis appealed. The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed. The court concluded, based on these facts, that a marriage between a man and a woman that was valid when it was entered into does not “automatically become void when one of the parties has his or her birth certificate amended to indicate a change of gender (sic).”