A federal appeals court has awarded
more than $600,000 in attorney's fees to the two couples who
challenged Texas' ban on same-sex marriage.
The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals
ordered Texas to pay $585,470 in attorney fees and $20,202 in costs
related to the case.
Texas voters in 2005 approved a
constitutional amendment that defined marriage as a heterosexual
union and prohibited the state from recognizing the out-of-state
marriages of gay and lesbian couples.
Mark Phariss and Vic Holmes, who were
denied a marriage license, and Cleopatra DeLeon and Nicole Dimetman,
whose Massachusetts marriage was not recognized by Texas, filed their
suit in 2013. Phariss and Holmes have since married.
“We're thrilled,” Phariss is quoted
as saying by The Dallas Morning News. “It means that our
attorneys finally get compensated for all of their hard work.”
“It's kind of a little bit sad that
it was a waste of taxpayer dollars that could have gone to other
things than to keep two people who love each other from getting
Texas appealed a federal court's ruling
striking down the ban. The Supreme Court settled the issue in
Obergefell before the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals decided