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What's next for married gay couples in legal limbo?

Lindsey Smith
Michigan Radio

On Friday, March 21, U.S. District Court Judge Bernard Friedman struck down Michigan's ban on same-sex marriage.

The next day, clerks in Ingham, Washtenaw, Oakland and Muskegon counties opened their doors to issue marriage licenses. More than 300 people were pronounced man and husband, or woman and wife, before 5 p.m. Then a stay was issued by the U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, which forced clerks to cease marrying gay couples.

So now what? What does all of this mean for the couples who were issued marriage licenses, and will those who didn't make the 5 p.m. cut-off get the chance to say their "I do's"? 

On Wednesday, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals will announce whether they will hear an appeal to Judge Friedman's decision.

If they choose to hear an appeal, the stay preventing couples from being married will likely remain in place until the appeal is heard, which could take months.

If they choose to not hear an appeal of the case, the stay will likely be lifted and gay couples will be free to marry.

Michigan Radio's Zoe Clark spoke with MPRN's Rick Pluta about the case this afternoon. Listen to Pluta's analysis below:

– Paige Pfleger, Michigan Radio Newsroom

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