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Utah Supreme Court lifts stay on same-sex adoption cases

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SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Supreme Court lifted a stay Thursday on same-sex adoptions in the state, which had halted the issuance of birth certificates for same-sex parents.

With the stay lifted, the Utah Health Department is prepared to issue birth certificates to children of same-sex couples, a health department spokeswoman confirmed Thursday.

The Utah Attorney General's Office filed a petition for the stay in May after three Utah judges — Elizabeth Hruby-Mills, L.A. Dever and Andrew Stone — approved adoptions among same-sex couples who were married in Utah during a brief time it was legal after U.S. District Judge Robert Shelby overturned Utah's Amendment 3 that defined marriage as being between a man and a woman.

Same-sex marriage is again legal in the state after the U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear the state's appeal, and those of five other states, on Oct. 6.

Utah Gov. Gary Herbert issued a statement following the high court's decision saying that state offices "should conduct business today and going forward, recognizing all legally performed same-sex marriages."

Utah then asked that its appeal of a federal ruling requiring the state to recognize same-sex marriages performed following Shelby's ruling be dropped, which the court did on Oct. 8.

McKenzie Romero

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