A judge has struck down the US state of Nebraska’s ban on gay marriage, saying it was too expansive and could encroach upon a range of relationships.

Federal judge Joseph Bataillon said the anti-gay marriage amendment, which Nebraska passed in 2000, was a threat to people who shared living arrangements, such as room mates and foster parents, Reuters reported.

The amendment barred gay state workers from sharing health insurance with a partner. It also hindered lobbying the government about gay rights, Bataillon said.

The law interferes with individuals’ abilities or incentives to join together in pursuit of a common endeavour, Bataillon said.

About 40 US states have passed anti-gay marriage laws or amendments, according to Reuters.

Nebraska is expected to appeal Bataillon’s ruling.

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