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Expanded benefits coming for same-sex couples who are married

Same-sex couples are starting to see some very important benefits since the Supreme Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act in 2013. Many of these benefits are allowing same-sex partners to enjoy the same benefits as opposite-sex couples. Colorado same-sex couples might like to know about the most recent announcement regarding the rights of same-sex couples who are married.

President Obama's administration recently announced that workers who are in same-sex marriages will be allowed to take time off of work under the Family and Medical Leave Act if their partner needs them to provide medical care. This change, if it becomes law, would be applicable to all employees regardless of where the employee lives. Currently, the FMLA time off is applicable to same-sex married couples only in the states that currently recognize the unions.

In addition to the proposed changes to the FMLA, the White House is also expected to put pressure on Congress to pass measures that will change other programs to include same-sex married couples. Just as the proposed change to FMLA will give employees coverage regardless of how their state views same-sex marriages, other changes would do the same thing for other programs.

As it stands now, same-sex spouses that live in states that acknowledge their union are eligible for a wide array of services from government agencies. Those who live in a state that doesn't recognize the unions aren't so lucky. With the changes that seem to be forthcoming, this would change because state recognition of the union wouldn't affect benefits.

Anyone who is a same-sex marriage probably knows about the struggles related to getting needed benefits. Understanding the laws about same-sex marriage benefits can take considerable time because of the complexities of these laws. Having a good understanding, however, can help to ensure you get the benefits you are entitled to receive.

Source: The Wall Street Journal, "Same-Sex Couples to Get More Benefits" Colleen McCain Nelson, Jun. 20, 2014

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