American Foundation for Equal Rights

Marriage News Blog

When Can Gay and Lesbian Couples Get Married in Maine, Maryland and Washington?

On November 6, voters in Maine, Maryland and Washington approved marriage equality initiatives. Voters also rejected a ban on marriage for gay and lesbian couples in Minnesota, but a state statute is still in effect.

Here’s when gay and lesbian couples in each state can get married:


December 29, 2012. Referendums in Maine take effect 30 days after the governor makes a “public proclamation of the result of the vote,” within 10 days after the result has been determined.


January 1, 2013. This date was included in the original legislation passed by the state’s General Assembly, which was approved by voters.


December 6. All referendums that are approved by voters in the Evergreen State go into effect 30 days after the election.

And California?

The U.S. Supreme Court is set to decide the fate of AFER’s challenge to Prop. 8 on Tuesday, November 20. An announcement is expected by Monday, November 26.

If the Supreme Court hears AFER’s challenge, AFER attorneys Ted Olson and David Boies will make the case for marriage equality to the nation’s highest court. A final decision is expected by June 2013.

Or, if the Justices decide not to hear the case, the Ninth Circuit decision that ruled Prop. 8 unconstitutional will be made permanent, with marriages starting as soon as the Ninth Circuit issues its mandate, likely within several days after the Supreme Court denies review.

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