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Court tells Utah to recognize over 1,000 same-sex marriages

Court tells Utah to recognize over 1,000 same-sex marriages

Late yesterday, 11 July, a three-judge panel ordered Utah to recognize the marriages of approximately 1,300 LGBTI couples.

This past December District Court Judge Robert J. Shelby ruled the state’s gay marriage law violated the US Constitution’s guarantees of equal protection and due process.

After the ruling, for 17 days, same-sex couples married in Utah. The ceremonies were halted when the state appealed to the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals.

The state refuses to recognizes those ceremonies, while the federal government does.

According to the Human Rights Campaign, a LGBTI rights organization, the judges who ruled yesterday also upheld Shelby’s ruling this past May.

The 11 July decision was stayed and the state has until 21 July to appeal to the Supreme Court.

This past week Utah’s attorney general  indicated he will file an appeal with the Supreme Court, the country’s highest court, to challenge Shelby’s decision.

Attorney General Sean Reyes’ office said the move will provide ‘clarity and resolution.’ 

The justices of the Supreme Court could agree to hear the case, or they could decline. If the do not take the appeal, the original ruling stands and same-sex marriages in Utah must start.