Marriage Rulings in the Courts

(Updated November 18)

There have been 54 victories for the freedom to marry since June 2013, when the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the core of the so-called Defense of Marriage Act in Windsor v. United States. Thirty-four rulings have been issued in federal court, fifteen have been issued in state court, and five have been issued by a federal appellate court. Below are the 54 marriage cases in which judges have ruled in favor of marriage, in reverse-chronological order. For more information on marriage litigation, click here.

Rulings Upholding Marriage Discrimination: In four cases, judges have upheld laws denying the freedom to marry to same-sex couples: The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit upehld bans in KY, MI, OH and TN; federal judges have upheld discrimination in Louisiana and Puerto Rico; and a Tennessee state court case denied respect for a couple's marriage for the purpose of the marriage's dissolution. 

Rolando v. Fox

11/19/14 Federal Court Ruling

Federal court ruling declaring that same-sex couples in MT have the freedom to marry and that marriages legally performed in other states must be respected. The ruling took effect immediately according to court order, meaning that, unless the attorney general appeals, same-sex couples should soon be able to get married. Learn more about the rulings.

Condon v. Haley and Bradacs v. Haley

11/12/14 • 11/18/14 2 Federal Court Rulings

Two federal court rulings issued in the same week declaring that same-sex couples in SC have the freedom to marry and that marriages legally performed in other states must be respected, respectively. The freedom to marry is now set to take effect in South Carolina on November 20.  Learn more about the rulings.

Lawson v. Kelly

11/7/14 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court ruling declaring that same-sex couples in MO have the freedom to marry and that marriages legally performed in other states must be respected. If the Missouri Attorney General does not appeal, the freedom to marry will be law of the land in Missouri.  Learn more about the ruling.

McGee v. Cole

11/7/14 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court ruling declaring that same-sex couples in WV have the freedom to marry and that marriages legally performed in other states must be respected. The decision is in line with the decision from the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals and formalized the WV Governor's decision in October 2014 to stop defending marriage discrimination.  Learn more about the ruling.

State of Missouri v. Jennifer Florida

11/5/14 • State Court Ruling

State court ruling declaring that the City of St. Louis cannot deny the freedom to marry to same-sex couples. The ruling is in effect as an appeal proceeds to the Missouri Supreme Court. The decision is limited to St. Louis, and a ruling from the state Supreme Court would bring the freedom to marry state-wide.  Learn more about the ruling.

Marie v. Moser

11/4/14 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court ruling granting preliminary injunction and declaring that same-sex couples in KS have the freedom to marry and that marriages legally performed in other states must be respected. The ruling was put on hold, but on November 12, the United States Supreme Court denied the state's request for a stay. Learn more about the ruling.

Guzzo v. Mead

10/17/14 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court ruling declaring that same-sex couples in WY have the freedom to marry and that marriages legally performed in other states must be respected. The following week, the Wyoming Governor announced that the state would not appeal, allowing the freedom to marry to take effect once and for all.  Learn more about the ruling.

Majors v. Horne & Connolly v. Roche

10/17/14 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court ruling in two separate cases declaring that same-sex couples in AZ have the freedom to marry and that marriages legally performed in other states must be respected. Just hours later, the Arizona Attorney General announced that the state would not appeal, allowing the freedom to marry to take effect once and for all.  Learn more about the ruling.

Hamby v. Parnell

10/12/14 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court ruling declaring that same-sex couples in AK have the freedom to marry and that marriages legally performed in other states must be respected. The ruling was briefly put on hold but now, as an appeal proceeds from the state of Alaska, same-sex couples have the freedom to marry.  Learn more about the ruling.

General Synod of the United Church of Christ v. Cooper

10/10/14 • 2 Federal Court Rulings

Federal court ruling declaring that same-sex couples in NC have the freedom to marry and that marriages legally performed in other states must be respected. One ruling, in General Synod of the UCC v. Cooper was issued late Friday afternoon on October 10, and a ruling was issued in two additional cases, Gerber v. Cooper and Fisher-Borne v. Smith, also in favor of marriage.  Learn more about the rulings.

Latta v. Otter & Sevcik & Sandoval

10/7/14 • Federal Appellate Court Ruling at the 9th Circuit

Federal appellate court decision upholding lower rulings that same-sex couples in Idaho and Nevada have the freedom to marry and that banning same-sex couples from marrying is unconstitutional. Learn more about these cases at the 9th Circuit.

Barrier v. Vasterling

10/03/14 • State Court Ruling

State court ruling declaring that marriages between same-sex couples legally performed in other states must be respected for all purposes in MO. Learn more about the ruling.

Costanza and Brewer v. Caldwell

9/22/14 • State Court Ruling

State court ruling declaring that Louisiana must respect the marriage of one same-sex couple, Angela Marie Costanza and Chastity Shanelle Brewer, granting the second-parent adoption. The decision also declares the marriage ban unconstitutional, affirming that it violates the due process and equal protection clauses of the 14th Amendment. Learn more about the ruling.

Majors v. Horne

9/12/14 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court ruling declaring that Arizona must respect the marriage of one same-sex couple, George Martinez and Fred McQuire. George passed away earlier this summer, and this case filed by Lambda Legal sought respect for the couple's legal marriage so that Fred could access survivor benefits and be listed as George's husband on his death certificate. Learn more about marriage litigation in Arizona.

Baskin v. Bogan & Wolf v. Walker

9/4/14 • Federal Appellate Court Ruling at the 7th Circuit

Federal appellate court decision upholding lower rulings that same-sex couples in Wisconsin and Indiana have the freedom to marry and that banning same-sex couples from marrying is unconstitutional. Learn more about these cases at the 7th Circuit.

Brenner v. Scott

August 21, 2014 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court decision declaring that same-sex couples in FL have the freedom to marry and that marriages legally performed in other states must be respected. Ruling stayed pending appeal to the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals. Learn more about Litigation in Florida.

Bowling v. Pence

8/19/14 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court decision declaring that same-sex couples legally married in other states must be respected as married in IN. The ruling is stayed pending further action from the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals. Learn more about Indiana.

Florida State Marriage Cases

July/August 2014 • 3 State Court Rulings

In July and August, 3 marriage rulings were issued in state court in 3 counties. In two rulings, judges struck down marriage bans altogether and in a third, a judge narrowly ruled that a widower's marriage to his deceased husband must be respected. The four cases: In Re Estate of Bangor (8/5/14, impacting Palm Beach County); Pareto v. Ruvin (7/25/14, impacting Miami-Dade County); Huntsman v. Heavilin (7/17/14, impacting Monroe County). Learn more about Litigation in Florida.

Bostic v. Schaefer

7/28/14 • Federal Appellate Court Ruling at the 4th Circuit

Federal appellate court decision upholding lower ruling that same-sex couples in Virginia have the freedom to marry and that banning same-sex couples from marrying is unconstitutional. Ruling is stayed pending further action from the United States Supreme Court. Learn more about Bostic v. Schaefer at the 4th Circuit.

Burns v. Hickenlooper

7/9/14 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court decision declaring that same-sex couples in Colorado have the freedom to marry and that marriages legally performed in other states must be respected. Ruling stayed until August 25, pending further action by defendants in Colorado. Learn more about Litigation in Colorado.

Bishop v. Smith

6/25/14 • Federal Appellate Court Ruling at the 10th Circuit

Federal appellate court decision upholding lower ruling that same-sex couples in OK have the freedom to marry and that banning same-sex couples from marrying is unconstitutional. Ruling is stayed pending further action from the state of Oklahoma, which could seek an en banc hearing by the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals or seek certiorari directly by the United States Supreme Court. Learn more about Bishop v. Smith at the 10th Circuit.

Brinkman v. Long & McDaniel-Miccio v. Colorado

7/9/14 • State Court Ruling

State court decision declaring that same-sex couples in CO have the freedom to marry and that marriages legally performed in other states must be respected. Ruling stayed pending appeal to Colorado Supreme Court. Learn more about Litigation in Colorado.

Love v. Beshear

7/1/14 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court decision declaring that same-sex couples in KY have the freedom to marry, following a previous ruling in this case that the state must respect the legal marriages of same-sex couples performed in other states. Learn more about Litigation in Kentucky.

Kitchen v. Herbert

6/25/14 • Federal Appellate Court Ruling at the 10th Circuit

Federal appellate court decision upholding lower ruling that same-sex couples in UT have the freedom to marry, that marriages legally performed in other states must be respected, and that banning same-sex couples from marrying is unconstitutional. Ruling is stayed pending appeal to the United States Supreme Court. Learn more about Kitchen v. Herbert at the 10th Circuit.

Baskin v. Bogan

6/25/14 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court decision declaring that same-sex couples in IN have the freedom to marry and that marriages legally performed in other states must be respected. Ruling stayed pending appeal, besides one couple that includes a terminally ill woman. Learn more about Indiana.

Wolf v. Walker

6/6/14 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court decision declaring that same-sex couples in WI have the freedom to marry and that marriages legally performed in other states must be respected. Ruling is stayed as appeal proceeds to the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals. Learn more about Wolf v. Walker.

Whitewood v. Wolf

5/20/14 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court decision declaring that same-sex couples in PA have the freedom to marry and that marriages legally performed in other states must be respected. No party appealed, and the freedom to marry took effect in Pennsylvania. Learn more about Whitewood v. Wolf.

Evans v. Utah

5/19/14 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court decision declaring that the nearly 1,300 marriage licenses issued to same-sex couples in December 2013 and January 2014 in Utah must be respected by the state of Utah. Ruling on hold pending appeal to the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals. Learn more about Evans v. Utah.

Geiger v. Kitzhaber & Rummel v. Kitzhaber

5/19/14 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court decision declaring that same-sex couples in OR have the freedom to marry and that marriages legally performed in other states must be respected. No party appealed, and the freedom to marry took effect in Oregon. Learn more about Geiger v. Kitzhaber & Rummel v. Kitzhaber.

Latta v. Otter

5/13/14 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court decision declaring that same-sex couples in ID have the freedom to marry and that the marriages of same-sex couples legally performed in other states must be respected. Ruling on hold pending appeal to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. Learn more about Latta v. Otter.

Wright v. Arkansas

5/9/14 • State Court Ruling

State court decision declaring that same-sex couples in AR have the freedom to marry and that the marriages of same-sex couples legally performed in other states must be respected. Ruling on hold pending appeal to the Arkansas Supreme Court. Learn more about Wright v. Arkansas.

Henry v. Himes

4/14/14 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court decision declaring that marriages between same-sex couples legally performed in other states must be respected for all purposes in OH. Ruling on hold pending appeal to 6th Circuit Court of Appeals. Learn more about Henry v. Himes.

Baskin v. Bogan

4/10/14 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court decision declaring that the marriage of one same-sex couple must be respected in Indiana. Ruling now in effect as appeal proceeds to the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals. Learn more about DeLeon v. Perry.

DeBoer v. Snyder

3/21/14 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court decision declaring that same-sex couples in MI have the freedom to marry. Ruling on hold pending appeal to the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals. Learn more about DeBoer v. Snyder.

Tanco v. Haslam

3/14/14 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court decision declaring that the marriages of the three plaintiff same-sex couples should be respected in TN. Ruling on hold pending appeal to the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals. Learn more about Tanco v. Haslam.

DeLeon v. Perry

2/26/14 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court decision declaring that same-sex couples in TX have the freedom to marry and marriages performed in other states must be respected. Ruling on hold pending appeal to the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals. Learn more about DeLeon v. Perry.

Lee v. Orr

2/21/14 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court decision declaring that same-sex couples in Cook County, IL have the freedom to marry and marriages performed in other states must be respected. No party appealed the ruling, and the freedom to marry took effect in Cook County. Several other counties followed suit, and by June 1, all counties in Illinois were issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Learn more about Lee v. Orr.

Bostic v. Schaeffer

2/13/14 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court decision declaring that same-sex couples in VA have the freedom to marry and marriages performed in other states must be respected. Ruling on hold pending appeal to the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals. Learn more about Bostic v. Schaeffer.

Bourke v. Beshear

2/12/14 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court decision declaring that marriages between same-sex couples legally performed in other states must be respected for all purposes in KY. Ruling on hold pending appeal to 6th Circuit Court of Appeals. Learn more about Bourke v. Beshear.

Bishop v. Smith

1/14/14 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court decision declaring that same-sex couples in OK have the freedom to marry and marriages performed in other states must be respected. Ruling on hold pending appeal to 10th Circuit Court of Appeals. Learn more about Bishop v. Smith.

Obergefell v. Wymyslo

12/23/13 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court decision declaring that marriages performed between same-sex couples in other states must be respected for the purpose of listing surviving spouses on death certificates in OH. Ruling on hold pending appeal to the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals. Learn more about Obergefell v. Wymyslo.

Kitchen v. Herbert

12/20/13 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court decision declaring that same-sex couples in UT have the freedom to marry and marriages performed in other states must be respected. Ruling on hold pending appeal to the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals. Learn more about Kitchen v. Herbert.

Griego v. Oliver

12/19/13 • State Court Ruling

New Mexico Supreme Court decision declaring that same-sex couples in NM have the freedom to marry and marriages performed in other states must be respected. No party appealed the ruling, and the freedom to marry took effect in New Mexico. Learn more about Griego v. Oliver.

Gray v. Orr

12/5/13 • Federal Court Ruling

Federal court decision granting temporary restraining order to allow one same-sex couple (in which one of the partners was facing terminal illness) to marry in Illinois before the marriage law approved by the Illinois legislature took effect. Learn more about Gray v. Orr.

Garden State Equality v. Dow

9/27/13 • State Court Ruling

State trial court decision declaring that same-sex couples in NJ have the freedom to marry and marriages performed in other states must be respected. No party appealed the ruling, and the freedom to marry took effect in New Jersey. Learn more about Garden State Equality v. Dow.

New Mexico Marriage Cases

August/September 2013 • 5 State Court Rulings

Over the course of two weeks in August and September, five different state courts issued rulings finding that same-sex couples in New Mexico have the freedom to marry. In Hanna v. Salazar (issued 8/22/13), a judge ruled that same-sex couples have the freedom to marry in NM, with the decision affecting Santa Fe County. Subsequently, pro-marriage rulings in Griego v. Oliver (issued 8/26/13), Stark v. Martinez (issued 8/27/13), Newton v. Stover (issued 8/29/13), and Katz v. Kamarripa (issued 9/5/13) impacted same-sex couples in Barnalillo and Santa Fe County, Taos County, Los Alamitos County, and Grant County; respectively. Subsequently, county clerks joined together in a new suit seeking clarity on New Mexico's marriage laws. Learn more about Griego v. Oliver.