The 2018 Open Enrollment period runs from November 1, 2017 to December 15, 2017 Ever since same-sex marriage became legal across the country in 2015, growing numbers of employers have eliminated domestic partner health coverage and been requiring same-sex couples to be married before an employee’s partner can receive health care benefits, according to a recent report from the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans (IFEBP), an educational organization.
The rationale is that there’s no need to continue to offer domestic partner coverage now that same-sex partners can tie the knot.
“Not offering same-sex domestic partner benefits is more common among small and mid-size employers.
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“It’s likely larger employers and those in tightly-competitive markets like high tech will continue offering the benefit to attract they key talent they need to remain competitive.” More than half of employers with 5,000 or more employees will still offer coverage in 2018 to same-sex domestic and opposite-sex domestic partners, according to the National Business Group on Health 2018 Large Employers’ Health Care Strategy and Plan Design Survey.
“We’re seeing little change in large employers’ coverage of domestic partners from 2017 to 2018,” said Steve Wojcik, vice president of public policy, at NBGH.
“In other words, employers that previously offered unmarried partner benefits to both same-sex and opposite-sex unmarried partners are leaving their benefits ‘as is’ and are not making any changes in light of marriage equality.” Added Solomon: “Typically, it comes down to perceived fairness.