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Case seeking an emergency marriage license for a lesbian couple, several months in advance of the implementation of the new marriage law in Illinois.


Vernita Gray and Patricia Ewert are in a loving, committed relationship, and entered into a civil union in June of 2011. In 1996, Ms. Gray was diagnosed with cancer, and despite years of treatment and therapy, the cancer spread to her bones and brain.The Illinois legislature voted in favor of the freedom to marry in November 2013 but theimplementation date was set by default for June 1, 2014. In light of Ms. Gray’s prognosis, the couple did not think they’d be able to wait almost seven months to be married.

Lambda Legal and the ACLU of Illinois filed suit in a federal court to order the Cook County Clerk to immediately issue a marriage license to Ms. Gray and Ms. Ewert.