The federal judge who heard arguments in a case challenging Idaho's ban on gay marriage said Monday that she'll hand down her decision soon.

Plaintiffs in the lawsuit are four gay couples who assert that Idaho's 2006 voter-approved constitutional amendment limiting marriage to heterosexual couples cannot stand in light of the 2013 Supreme Court ruling that struck down a key provision of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). Idaho's amendment bans same-sex marriage and civil unions. Similar prohibitions appear in state statutes.

After hearing arguments Monday, Chief U.S. Magistrate Judge Candy W. Dale told attorneys representing the couples to expect a ruling in the “relatively near future.”

The couples, all of whom are from Boise, are represented by the National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR) and Boise-based attorneys Deborah A. Ferguson and Craig Durham, who argue that the state's marriage laws violate the United States Constitution's guarantees of equal protection and due process.

The couples, three of whom are raising children, are Sue Latta and Traci Ehlers, Lori and Sharene Watsen, Sheila Robertson and Andrea Altmayer and Amber Beierle and Rachael Robertson.

Lawyer Thomas Perry, who is representing Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter, a named defendant in the case, Latta v. Otter, told the AP that “redefining marriage in genderless terms” poses “significant risks.”