SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — The nation’s high court has ruled that gay couples who adopt a child in one state cannot have that adoption voided by another state.

Monday the Supreme Court reversed an Alabama ruling that refused to honor a lesbian woman’s adoption in Georgia. The high court cited the Constitutions Full Faith and Credit clause which says states have a legal duty to honor agreements made in other states, and gay adoptions are no exception.

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“The Georgia judgment appears on its face to have been issued by a court with jurisdiction, and there is no established Georgia law to the contrary. It follows that the Alabama Supreme Court erred in refusing to grant that judgment full faith and credit,” reads the ruling.

>>READ THE RULING

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The matter first went to court in 2011 after a lesbian couple with three children in Georgia split up. The birth mother moved with the children to Alabama and denied the other woman’s right to visit. The latter sued for visitation arguing she had formally adopted the children, but the Alabama court ruled the adoption invalid because it was in Georgia.

The ruling is a victory for gay families.

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“I am overjoyed that the U.S. Supreme Court reversed the Alabama court decision,” said the adoptive mother in an interview with the Los Angeles Times. “I have been my children’s mother in every way for their whole lives. I thought that adopting them meant that we would be able to be together always. When the Alabama court said my adoption was invalid and I wasn’t their mother, I didn’t think I could go on. The Supreme Court has done what’s right for my family.”