What constitutes a legal spouse for the purpose ofbeing eligible to receive health benefits?

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

What constitutes a legal spouse for the purpose ofbeing eligible to receive health benefits?

I was hired by my employer on 4/4/11. The pre-employment paperwork which I reviewed to determine whether I should take the job or not said they provide benefits for my “legal spouse” and another paper says “spouse is the individual to whom you are legally married for federal income tax purposes.” Now they are saying that we don’t qualify because I am transgendered and present as a women and thereby we are same sex and the company’s benefit policy, which was not provided prior to employment, requires we be man and woman. I relocated from CO to MD for this position. My wife and I are married.

Asked on May 23, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, Maryland

Answers:

MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Here is the problem. Your dilemma is one of many issues each state is reviewing for tax purposes, health benefit purposes, educational purposes and other reasons. It is a political hotbed. So if your state does not recognize a transgendered person's marriage to someone (a woman) as a legal marriage (even if it was legal in Connecticut), then you cannot force the health insurance company to recognize the marriage. If your birth certificate has not changed or your social security card and your marriage in Connecticut was between and registered as between a man and a woman, then Maryland should probably be required based on the Full Faith and Credit Clause to recognize it. Talk to a lawyer about this and see if you need to show all of your records and appeal the coverage with the insurance department and possibly file a claim with your state's insurance department.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption