US: Supreme Court rules that Utah does not have to recognise same-sex marriages yet

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The US Supreme Court has ruled that Utah does not have to immediately recognise over 1000 same-sex marriages conducted in the state.

Over 1000 gay couples married in the state, where same-sex marriage was legalised for 17 days after a judge ruled in December that the state’s marriage ban is unconstitutional.

However, the marriage ban was put back in place pending the state’s appeal agains the ruling, which is still ongoing.

On Wednesday, Utah asked the US Supreme Court — in an emergency appeal — to block a ruling instructing the state to immediately recognise the marriages of the same-sex couples who had married in the period.

Yesterday, in a ruling just two sentences long, the court maintained that Utah does not have to recognise the marriages until the conclusion of the appeals process.

It reads: “The application for stay presented to Justice Sotomayor and by her referred to the Court is granted.

“The preliminary injunction issued by the United States District Court for the District of Utah, case No. 2:14-cv-00055-DAK, on May 19, 2014, is stayed pending final disposition of the appeal by the Unites States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit.”

The state’s governor, Republican Gary Herbert, said before the ruing that the state would recognise the marriages if the court had ordered them to do so.

Despite the setback, the ruling is likely to only delay the recognition of the marriages, as the state will be forced to recognise them anyway if the appeal against same-sex marriage as a whole fails.