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Washington same sex couples – initial marriage data report released

Nearly 2,500 same sex couples were married in Washington between December 6, 2012 and March 31, 2013. Same sex marriages represented more than 20 percent of the 11,661 marriages that occurred in Washington during this 16 week period.

Same sex marriages occurred in 35 of Washington’s 39 counties during this time period, which began on the first day same sex couples could legally get a marriage license in the state. More same sex couples were married in King County than in any other county; one-third of the marriages performed in King County during this time period were same sex marriages. Ferry, Asotin, Garfield, and Wahkiakum counties reported no same sex marriages so far.

More female couples married than male couples; 63 percent of all same sex marriages were among female couples. Same sex couples may be more likely to travel to Washington to marry. In 14 percent of same sex marriages, both spouses were residents of another state. Among opposite sex couples, both spouses were from another state in only four percent of marriages.

The state health department may not yet have received records for all marriages during the reporting period. Information on a marriage certificate is reported by the couple and officiant. After the ceremony, the officiant files the marriage certificate with the county auditor that issued the marriage license and the auditor files the marriage certificate with the Department of Health.

The Department of Health website (www.doh.wa.gov) is your source for a healthy dose of information. Also, find us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

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