Utah Governor Gary Herbert announced late Tuesday that Utah would not recognize more than 1,300 gay couples married in the state.

In an email to state cabinet members, the Herbert administration said state recognition of such unions is “on hold until further notice.”

“Please understand this position is not intended to comment on the legal status of those same-sex marriages – that is for the courts to decide,” the email reads. “The intent of this communication is to direct state agency compliance with current laws that prohibit the state from recognizing same-sex marriages.”

Herbert added that state non-recognition is not retroactive.

“For example, if a same-sex married couple previously changed their names on new drivers licenses, those licenses should not be revoked. If a same-sex couple seeks to change their names on drivers licenses now, the law does not allow the state agency to recognize the marriage, therefore the new drivers licenses cannot be issued,” the email stated.

“We also recognize that these changes affect real people's lives. Let us carefully and considerately ensure that we, and our employees throughout the state, continue to treat all people with respect and understanding as we assist them.”

For 17 days starting on December 20, Utah was the 18th state to legalize same-sex marriage following a federal judge's order declaring Amendment 3, the state's 2004 voter-approved constitutional amendment limiting marriage to heterosexual couples, in violation of the U.S. Constitution. On Monday, the Supreme Court unanimously agreed to put the decision on hold until the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver reviews the case. The appeals court has fast tracked the case and a ruling is expected in the summer.