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US: Massachusetts announces it will recognise Utah same-sex marriages

Joseph McCormick January 17, 2014
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Amid confusion stemming from the fact that Utah only had a brief window of equal marriage during which 1,300 couples wed, Massachusetts has said it will honour those marriages.

On Thursday the Attorney General of Massachusetts confirmed that the marriages of those couples would me recognised in the state, which was the first to legalise same-sex marriage in the US.

“Our view is that the marriages in Utah were validly performed and should be recognized here,” said Chris Loh, a spokesman for Attorney General Martha Coakley.

The Utah State Tax Commission also made the announcement on Thursday that same-sex married couples married in Utah or elsewhere, would be able to file joint tax returns in the state.

Between 20 December and 6 January, some 1,300 couples married in the state as a US District Judge ruled that a ban on same-sex marriage violated the state’s constitution.

The US Supreme Court last Monday put a stay on equal marriage in the US state of Utah, forbidding same-sex couples from being issued with marriage licences in the state during an appeal against a ruling to allow them.

The Utah Attorney General Sean Reyes advised Governor Gary Herbert that marriages between gay couples who married in that short period should not be recognised by the state for benefits purposes.

US Attorney General Eric Holder has since responded to calls to say Utah married same-sex couples would be treated as married by the federal government, despite a directive from the state Governor that they would not.

More: Civil partnerships, equal marriage, gay marriage, gay wedding, lesbian marriage, lesbian wedding, marriage, marriage equality, Massachusetts, same sex marriage, Same-sex wedding, US, Utah, wedding

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