Federal Government to Recognize Same Sex Marriages Performed in Utah
For 17 days, same sex marriages were legally performed in Utah. On December 20, 2013, a federal district court struck down Utah’s Defense of Marriage Act (“DOMA”) which, similarly to Florida’s DOMA, recognizes marriage as only between one man and one woman. Over 1300 Utah gay and lesbian couples took advantage of their newly recognized right to marry when, on January 6, 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court stepped in to pause marriage equality in Utah pending appeal.
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Despite the legal seesaw regarding the status of same sex marriage in Utah, the Washington Post cites U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder as stating that those couples who were married during that 17 day period would be recognized by the federal government and receive federal marriage benefits.