Ohio Southern District Court recognizes same-sex marriage

The University of Pittsburgh’s Jurist Paper Chase yesterday reported on the Southern District of Ohio’s ruling last Monday allowing a  terminally ill gay man who  married legally in Maryland earlier this month and returned to Ohio with his partner where they have resided for nearly 20 years, to show a “married” marital status and carry his partner’s name  as his surviving spouse on his death certificate. (Ruling)

Ohio law, Jurist recounts, prohibits same-sex marriage but does recognize marriages solemnized outside of the state. Their suit enjoins enforcement of Ohio's same-sex marriage prohibition in their own case alone, but a Washington Post article quotes Al Gerhardstein, the men’s attorney, as saying “This is one more step toward marriage equality in the state of Ohio,” and that he’s gotten calls from other same-sex couples who married in other states and are exploring their options to have their marriage recognized in Ohio.

The Post article, also from yesterday, quotes Southern District Judge Timothy Black, who wrote the decision, that “historically, Ohio law has recognized out-of-state marriages as valid as long as they were legal where they took place, pointing to marriages between cousins and involving minors. 'How then can Ohio, especially given the historical status of Ohio law, single out same-sex marriages as ones it will not recognize? The short answer is that it cannot.'"