Does the courts decision affect the rights of heterosexual couples?
No. The rights of heterosexual couples to marry and the rights and responsibilities of those who are married remain exactly the same. The decision simply enables same-sex couples to marry. Does this ruling require religious groups or clergy members to marry same-sex couples? No. The court’s decision said the government may not discriminate against same-sex couples by barring them from civil marriage – a legal institution established and regulated by the government. Religious groups and clergy members remain free to recognize or refuse to recognize marriages within their religion as each sees fit. While some faiths do not permit same-sex couples to marry within that faith, a growing number do. As a result of the court’s decisions, same-sex couples may choose to be married by a clergy person in a welcoming community of faith or by a civil servant such as a judge or authorized deputy. For same-sex couples in binational relationships, will getting married in California permit a non-U.S. ci