Groundbreaking ruling recognizes same-sex common-law marriage in Utah


| The Salt Lake Tribune | December 28, 2015

(Leah Hogsten | The Salt Lake Tribune) Nicki Bidlack wipes away tears as she talks about her deceased love, Sara Clow, December 24, 2015. Clow, died before the couple could formally marry, yet Bidlack secured what is believed to be the first recognition of a common law LGBT marriage from the 2nd District Court. The ruling allowed Bidlack to secure a new birth certificate for their son, which names both women as his parents.

The best gift Nicki Bidlack got for Christmas in 2015 was a piece of paper.

It’s an amended birth certificate for her 2-year-old son that lists both Bidlack and the late Sara Clow as the boy’s mothers.

“This is what she would have wanted,” said Bidlack, 41, of Ogden, her voice trembling as tears slid across her cheeks. “She wanted him from before he was born. To have her name on it … to have him see her name, even though she’s not here … she would be so happy.”

Clow, 29, died from injuries sustained when she rolled her pickup on Interstate 15 near Willard just before midnight on Sept. 13, 2014.

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