Coming Sunday: The same-sex marriage law takes effect across Illinois. The effective date of the law is June 1, although 16 counties have been allowing same-sex couples to marry already, relying on a court order and the advice of the attorney general. Bernard Cherkasov, head of the group Equality Illinois, expects some action on Opening Day.
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“I do think there’ll be a rush on June 1 in those counties who are open that day, and on June 2, which is the first business day when marriage licenses can be gotten all across the state, because people have been waiting for this moment for a very long time, and they don’t want to wait any longer,” he said.
Illinois has had civil unions for three years, affecting only state law, but after the Supreme Court ruling in the Windsor case last year, married same-sex couples count as married under federal law.
Cherkasov says there is money to be made on the wedding industry, citing a UCLA study that puts the economic impact of marriage equality in Illinois at $100 million, including couples coming from other states to get married in Illinois.
June 1 is Sunday; some county clerks will open their offices to accommodate applicants; others will start issuing licenses Monday. Counties where county clerks have already issued marriage licenses to same-sex couples are Cass, Champaign, Clinton, Cook, DeKalb, Greene, Grundy, Hardin, Jackson, Macon, McLean, Ogle, Perry, Saint Clair, Wabash, and Woodford.