Probate Office to continue issuing same-sex marriage licenses

Published 2:02 pm Thursday, January 7, 2016

The Chilton County Probate Office will continue to issue both same-sex and heterosexual marriage licenses despite a recent ruling from Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore.

Chilton County Probate Judge Bobby Martin said his office was following the Supreme Court order issued on June 26, 2015, ordering states to issue same-sex marriage licenses.

“I have been advised by my attorney that the federal court supersedes anything the state does,” Martin said. “We are continuing to do what we have been doing.”

On Wednesday, Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore issued an administrative order calling for all state probate judges to stop issuing marriage licenses.

Moore cited that probate judges have a ministerial duty to not issue any marriage licenses “contrary to the Alabama Sanctity of Marriage Amendment or the Alabama Marriage Protection Act.”

The Chilton County Probate Office has been issuing same-sex marriage licenses since June 29, 2015.

The U.S. Supreme Court voted 5-4 on June 26, 2015 to legalize same-sex marriage in the United States.

Although Martin’s office now issues marriage licenses to anyone interested, his office has stopped performing wedding ceremonies.

Martin made the decision to stop performing wedding ceremonies on Feb. 3, 2015.