Utah To Pay Plaintiffs' Attorney Fees In Same-Sex Marriage Case

Nov 25, 2014

An order signed Monday by U.S. District Judge Dale Kimball means the state will pay attorneys’ fees for the eight plaintiffs in the Evans v. Utah case, which addressed the legal status of couples wed following the initial ruling that Utah’s ban on same-sex marriage was unconstitutional.  

The plaintiffs’ attorneys were seeking nearly $200,000 for their services. However, after an agreement was reached on the fee issue, the state will pay $95,000 to the attorneys.

The attorneys had initially asked for more than $164,000 in fees for the district court case and another $33,000 for the appeals case.

“We’re very pleased that the injunction has been made permanent and that we achieved a good result and something that will be positive in the lives of these families moving forward,” said John Mejia, director for the Utah chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union and one of the attorneys for the plaintiffs.

According to media, the order makes permanent a temporary injunction issued last May, which directed the state to recognize the marriages. This action officially closes the case, Mejia said.

“A preliminary injunction was converted into what is called a permanent injunction, which means that the order applies to the state going forward,” Mejia said.

More than 1,200 Utah couples wed after U.S. District Judge Robert Shelby’s Dec. 20 decision.