Dozens of happy couples were issued marriage licenses on Friday, the first day of full marriage equality anywhere in Illinois, after a federal judge ruled that marriage licenses could be issued in Cook County to any couple.
As of 7 p.m., when the Cook County Clerk’s office closed, 46 same-sex couples had gotten marriage licenses at the Clerk’s downtown office.
“Today was an exhilarating day, not only because of the historic ruling by Judge Coleman, but because of the great outpouring of pure joy from the happy couples, many of them with their families, who were at last able to get their marriage licenses,” Cook County Clerk David Orr said.
The clerk’s downtown office, which stayed open an extra two hours to accommodate those who wanted to get their marriage licenses today, was the only one in Cook County to issue licenses to same-sex couples on Friday. On Monday, all of the clerk’s offices will issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
Any couple can now obtain a marriage license in Cook County. Couples who have an Illinois civil union can get a marriage license and the $60 fee will be waived. Only couples who want to do a retroactive marriage license to the date of their civil union must wait until June 1. Today’s order by Judge Coleman did not address this provision in the new law.
Any couple who gets a marriage license must wait a day to be married. Licenses are good for 60 days.