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Judge rules Ohio must recognize gay marriage of dying man

Ohio doesn't recognize gay marriage, but a federal judge ordered this week that it must in the case of a dying man who married his partner in Maryland, where the unions are legal, and list the couple on the official state death certificate.

U.S. District Judge Timothy Black issued a temporary restraining order on Monday against Ohio's 2004 law that bans recognition of gay marriages from other states, the Los Angeles Times reported.

He made the ruling for the case of John Arthur and Jim Obergefell, who married in Maryland earlier this month but live in Ohio. Mr. Arthur is dying from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease, and the judge ruled that the state must list his gay marriage on his death certificate, the Los Angeles Times reported.

The attorney general criticized the judge's order, warning that it could usurp Ohio's law that bans gay marriage and lead to legal interpretations that open the door for the unions.

The judge, however, said his restraining order only applied to Mr. Arthur and Mr. Obergefell, and would expire Aug. 5 unless further court action ensued.

At the same time, he also hinted of sympathy for the gay couple, saying current state law does "not currently [accord them] the same dignity and recognition as similarly situated opposite-sex couples," the Los Angeles Times reported.

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