A European Court of Justice advocate general has advised that European Union member states must recognize the rights of same-sex spouses, even if a country has not extended marriage rights to gay and lesbian couples.

According to The Guardian, Melchior Wathelet, a Belgian advocate general in the Luxembourg court, said that all EU members must recognize the rights of gay spouses.

Such opinions are non-binding but are normally followed by the court, the paper wrote.

The Luxembourg court is currently deliberating in the case of a Romanian national, Adrian Coman, whose American husband, Claibourn Robert Hamilton, was refused residence in Romania based on the couple's 2010 marriage in Brussels. A decision is expected in the coming months.

Romania is one of the six EU member states that do not recognize the unions of gay couples. The other nations include Poland, Slovakia, Bulgaria, Lithuania and Latvia.