January 31, 2024

When Was Gay Marriage Legalized in Illinois?

When was gay marriage legalized in illinois

In November 2013 Governor Pat Quinn signed legislation that essentially made same-sex marriage legal in Illinois. The law took effect June 1, 2014. The wedding ceremony was simple and the guests were happy, including many of the same-sex rights activists who had fought for this day.

Before this legislation, same-sex couples could enter into civil unions which conferred most of the rights that come with marriage in Illinois. However, they did not have access to federal recognition of their relationships and were not entitled to hospital visitation rights, right to share a room in a nursing home, inheritance rights, pension benefits or the ability to make medical decisions for their partners.

Once the new law took effect, the state flipped a switch and began retroactively recognizing same-sex relationships that had been entered into in other jurisdictions. The same-sex couples now have access to all of the rights that spouses in Illinois are able to enjoy.

In addition to these changes, the law allows a couple to be married by anyone who is licensed as an officiant in the state of Illinois. This includes religious officiants, judges and public officials. It also allows gay and lesbian couples to marry in any county in the state where same-sex marriage is legal. The only requirement is that the couple completes the established process of applying for a license and having their marriage blessed by a judge or a public official.

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