Today, Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund took what one of its lawyers calls “a strategic step” in the national effort to advance marriage equality by filing a federal lawsuit in Nevada seeking equal marriage rights for eight same-sex couples in the state.
The lawsuit, Sevcik v. Sandoval, marks the first time that Lambda Legal has sought equal marriage rights for gay and lesbian couples in federal court, although a staff attorney with the group, Tara Borelli, notes that another case filed by Lambda Legal in state court in New Jersey includes federal claims as well.
According to the complaint filed in U.S. District Court for the District of Nevada, the lead plaintiffs in the new lawsuit — Beverly Sevcik, 73, and Mary Baranovich, 76, of Carson City, Nevada — have been together for more than 40 years. As the complaint notes, “When Beverly and Mary committed their lives to each other on October 2, 1971 and bought rings to signify their relationship, they were careful not to purchase matching rings for fear of having their relationship discovered.”
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