State Attorney General David Louie announced on Monday that the state would stop defending its old marriage law, which barred gay couples from getting married.
Gay couples had sued the state in federal court challenging the law as unconstitutional. In a divided response, Gov. Neil Abercrombie chose not to defend the law in court, but the state Department of Health did.
A gay marriage law was approved last year after a special session of the Legislature, making the federal lawsuit largely moot.
“Last year, Hawaii changed the law to ensure marriage equality for same-sex couples,” Louie said in a statement. “Its passage has turned the page in history on the issue of discrimination. There are no longer grounds to defend the previous law.”