Same-Sex Marriage Causes Waves in the Insurance Arena
The Supreme Court ruled that same-sex marriages are constitutional, and that means a lot to employers. Many employers will now get rid of same-sex domestic partner coverage, which will cut costs. Benefits consultants have already begun working with employers to make the move from fees for domestic partners to simply spouse fees on insurance policies.
Same-sex domestic partner benefits began in the 90’s, when many employers were willing to add same-sex domestic partner benefits in an effort to equalize treatment for all employees. These domestic partner benefits were a major tool for recruiting and keeping gay workers, but it had its downside. There was more bureaucracy involved, causing an expense to the participating employers. This is exactly why the Federal court ruling could help reduce overall insurance costs; the extra funds needed for equal treatment are no longer necessary.
Employers are excited for the ability to treat all married individuals the same, as it means less paperwork, less human resources time taken, and, most importantly, less overhead spent. The Federal ruling also erases the gray lines between gay couples and single employees. A gay couple living together was treated as a legally single employee living with a significant other; now, employers are allowed to treat gay couples as legally married, avoiding inconsistent treatments.
Of course, states where gay marriage is already legal have already been witness to these changes. Two noted companies who already live with the changes are Delta Airlines and Verizon Communications. Employees were allowed a time frame to get married or lose domestic partner benefits. Many employers are following suit, examining policies and making changes.
If you’re a straight married person, you may be asking, “How does this affect me?” Over the long run, everyone will see reduced insurance rates. As the extra costs are dropped, the overall health insurance cost will also be lowered. Even if you do not care for or know a gay couple, your life will be affected in a positive way through the Federal legalization of a gay marriage.
If you have any other questions, contact us at Vancouver Home Health Care Agency.
At Vancouver Home Health Care Agency, Caring and Compassion is our business.