The Supreme Court on Wednesday ruled the 1996 Defense Of Marriage Act unconstitutional.

The ruling, passed on a 5-4 vote, grants legally married same-sex couples the right to claim federal benefits traditionally only available to opposite-sex married couples. The majority of the Court said DOMA was a violation of basic due process and equal protection principles under the Federal Government.

The Court also dismissed the appeal against California’s Proposition 8, effectively paving the way for gay marriage in California to resume.