Former county clerk Kim Davis, who refused to issue marriage licences to same-sex couples in Kentucky, must pay more than $260,000 in legal fees and expenses after one couple sued her.
That’s on top of the $100,000 in damages already awarded to David Ermold and David Moore.
The gay couple took the former Rowan County clerk to court in 2015 after she declined to issue them a marriage licence.
Davis’ legal woes began that year when she started denying marriage licences to queer couples – despite a landmark Supreme Court ruling that legalised same-sex marriage across the US.
In September, US district judge David Bunning issued a ruling, awarding Ermold and Moore $50,000 each.
Now, Davis must pay an additional $246,026 in attorney fees and $14,058 in expenses.
Michael Garland, part of the legal team representing Ermold and Moore, told USA Today in September that his clients “couldn’t be happier” with the ruling.
Davis’ legal team argued that the fees and costs sought by the couple’s attorneys were excessive, but Bunning disagreed. The judge said Davis must pay the fees and costs because the couple prevailed in their lawsuit, the Lexington Herald-Leader reported.
It’s likely that attorneys for Davis will appeal against the decision.
Davis drew international media attention when she was briefly jailed in 2015 over her refusal to issue marriage licences to same-sex couples. She argued that doing so would violate her religious beliefs as a Christian as well as “God’s definition of marriage”.
To add to her troubles, Davis lost her bid for re-election as county clerk in 2018.
In March 2022, Bunning wrote in a memorandum and opinion that Davis had violated the plaintiffs’ constitutional right to marry.