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COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - Attorneys have until next week to file motions in a lawsuit playing a key role in South Carolina's debate over the issuance of same-sex marriage licenses.

U.S. District Judge Michelle Childs on Tuesday gave attorneys until Oct. 23 to file, with another three weeks for responses.

Childs said she may hold a hearing in the case, although that wouldn't happen for several more weeks.

Gay marriage appeared imminent last week until the state Supreme Court ruled that South Carolina must wait for Childs to rule in a case challenging the state constitution's gay marriage ban.

That case is advancing again after the U.S. Supreme Court's decision not to hear an appeal of a ruling allowing same-sex marriage in Virginia by a federal appeals court with jurisdiction over South Carolina.