A federal court on Wednesday denied an Alabama mother's request to keep the state from recognizing her late son's out-of-state marriage to another man.

Paul Hard and Charles David Fancher married in 2011 in Massachusetts.

Roughly 3 months after the wedding, Fancher was killed in a car crash north of Montgomery, which led to a wrongful death lawsuit.

Alabama officials refused to recognize the marriage. Fancher's death certificate lists him as unmarried.

Hard sued the state, asking a federal judge to force Alabama officials to issue a corrected death certificate for Fancher that lists him as the surviving spouse.

Pat Fancher, Charles Fancher's mother, intervened in the case and asked the court not to recognize her son's marriage. The Christian conservative group Foundation for Moral Law – which is headed by Kayla Moore, wife of Roy Moore, chief justice of the Alabama Supreme Court – represented Pat Fancher in the case.

Fancher's lawyers argued that the Supreme Court's ruling striking down gay marriage bans in all 50 states should not apply retroactively.

“The issue is not whether someone may marry a member of the same sex today. The issue is whether a court may or should look back four years and recognize a marriage that was not legally valid. Of course, if the marriage is recognized it will only cause further economic harm to a family which has already lost one its own. And if recognized, this man will be awarded an entire spousal share of the wrongful death proceeds which would be unjust even under normal circumstances considering the two were 'married' less than 3 months,” the Foundation for Moral Law said in a brief.

District Judge Keith Watkins disagreed, ordering the Clerk of Court to “issue a check drawn on ServisFirst Bank where the funds are deposited in a money market account for the principal amount of $552,956.69, plus ninety percent of all interest earned to date that is due for distribution to Plaintiff Paul Hard.” The other 10 percent of interest will go to the court.

Watkins also denied a motion to set aside his order.

(Brief provided by Equality Case Files.)