Lawsuit Filed to Gain Rights For Same-Sex Couples During Stay

Mar 10, 2014

The American Civil Liberties Union of Utah filed a preliminary injunction last week which would force the state, the attorney general and the governor to recognize the same-sex marriages that took place in Utah until the pending supreme court case has been decided. 

Since the stay on gay marriage was set in place, same-sex couples who were married in Utah do not have access marital rights that other heterosexual married couple’s receive.

John Mejia, the legal director for the ACLU, said the state currently recognizes gay marriages, but only for tax purposes.


"The state will not recognize those marriages for any purposes moving forward -- this would include benefits and adoptions," Mejia said. "Any benefit, privilege or protection that the state needs to grant to married people, the state has said they will not do so until they hear back from the court in Kitchen [case].”

Mejia said by doing this the state would recognize the marriages at least until a Supreme Court decision has been made.

“The problem is that these couples are married and they have the right to everything that a marriage entitles you to and the state has put that on hold, so we’re working to change that," Mejia said. 

The court could grant marital rights to those same-sex couples as early as Wednesday. 

Morgan Pratt is a sophomore at Utah State University seeking a degree in Journalism and Communications.