A lawsuit seeking to have the marriages of two gay couples recognized on death certificates has been expanded to include all similarly situated couples in Ohio, despite a statewide gay marriage ban.
Attorneys are asking a federal judge to require Ohio's health department to order all funeral directors and coroners in the state to list gay clients as married if they were legally wed in other states.
Judge Timothy Black approved a request to expand the lawsuit Wednesday.
A coalition supporting same-sex marriage announced a new initiative yesterday in Ohio’s three largest cities.
A couple dozen supporters gathered outside Trinity Cathedral in downtown Cleveland, as organizers announced the creation of “Why Marriage Matters Ohio”. Its goal is to educate state residents on marriage equality, and help build support to overturn Ohio’s ban on gay marriage. The ban was approved by nearly two-thirds of voters in 2004.
A judge has ordered that a recently deceased Ohio man be listed on his death certificate as married and his husband must be listed as his spouse despite Ohio's gay marriage ban.
Judge Timothy Black's order Tuesday came just hours after attorneys asked him to rule quickly so that 54-year-old William Herbert Ives is listed as married on his death certificate before being cremated on Wednesday.
Ives and David Michener had been together for 18 years and have three adopted children. They married in Delaware on July 22, but Ives died unexpectedly a week ago.