Utah Plaintiffs Ask SCOTUS To Review Case

BTL Staff

SALT LAKE CITY - Three couples challenging the State of Utah's ban on same-sex marriage asked SCOTUS to accept the request of Utah state officials to review the case. Plaintiffs argue that Supreme Court review is required because same-sex couples in the state and across the country "urgently" need to have the security of marriage wherever they work or travel to fully protect themselves sand their families.

The brief that the plaintiffs released argues that only a Supreme Court decision affirming their right to marry and have their marriages respected nationwide can resolve this fundamental inequality.

Plaintiff couples Kody Patridge and Laurie Wood, Derek Kitchen and Moudi Sbeity and Katie Call and Karen Archer argue that state laws banning same-sex marriage violate the U.S. Constitution's guarantees of equal protection and due process. The couples who won favorable decisions from lower federal courts, ask SCOTUS to review the case so that their marriages will be truly equal and respected throughout the country.

In their request couples say: "At stake in this case is the liberty of an entire class of Americans, who urgently need a ruling from this Court that they are able to marry and to have their marriages recognized on an equal basis with other citizens. In the past year, lower courts around the country have correctly recognized that state laws prohibiting same-sex couples from marrying violate the Constitution. Yet because these rulings do not apply nationwide, same-sex couples continue to experience great uncertainty and serious harm. They cannot plan for their own and their children's futures secure in the knowledge that states may not strip them of legal recognition of their familial relationships when they move or travel."

In December of 2013 U.S. District Judge Robert J. Shelby ruled Utah's laws denying same-sex marriage as a violation of the U.S. Constitution's guarantees of equal protection and due process. More than a thousand couples married in Utah during the 16 days following the ruling.

Utah appealed the ruling to the U.S. 10th Circuit Court of Appeals, which ruled on June 25, 2014 that the ban violates the U.S. Constitution on the same grounds of equal protection and due process. On Aug. 5th Utah requested the audience of SCOTUS and now plaintiff couples also request audience of SCOTUS to hear the case as soon as possible.

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