Empire State insurance regulators say a recent same-sex spouse circular letter applies to group life plans and to group disability plans as well as to group health plans.
The Office of the General Counsel at the New York State Insurance Department describes the department’s position in OGC Opinion Number 08-12-05.
New York does not permit individuals to marry other individuals of the same sex within New York, but other states do permit same-sex marriages to take place.
In November, the office issued an opinion concerning group health plan members who marry same-sex spouses in states that permit same-sex marriages to take place.
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In that opinion and a later circular letter, the New York department said group health plans should treat participants’ same-sex spouses the same way they would treat opposite-sex spouses.