B.S. (plaintiff) and F.B. (defendant) were in a same-sex relationship for over 14 years. The couple lived together, participated in a Buddhist marriage ceremony in New Mexico, and later entered into a civil union in the State of Vermont. Subsequently, the parties had a falling out. B.S. then filed a petition for dissolution of the Buddhist marriage under state law on the grounds of cruel and inhuman treatment, seeking financial support and the exclusive use and occupancy of the house. F.B. moved to dismiss the complaint for lack of subject matter jurisdiction and failure to state a claim, arguing that New York did not recognize the civil union obtained in Vermont and that, pursuant to Vermont law, the civil union was null and void, because the couple had already participated in the Buddhist marriage ceremony.