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Glenn and I live in Georgia, which is not a marriage equality state.  After 35 years of being together, we finally were able to get married in Washington DC on January 2.   We've both felt for the first time that we're finally a part of something much larger that we've been barred from.  Just doing taxes is a whole different feel.  Next year we'll be filing married, jointly, for the first time.

Last Sunday, I was excited to hear via NPR that insurance companies must now cover same sex spouses (legally married) for family coverage, regardless of the state they live in:

What insurers offer to spouses in a traditional marriage, they must make available to same-sex couples, the federal government said Friday.

The change means that same-sex couples, who haven't been able to buy family health policies, will be able to do so now.

After some digging, I was surprised to find that little has been made of it.  I've done a search but  haven't found a related dKos diary.  

Hence this diary, which may be of lesser interest for same sex spouses who live in the states with marriage equality.  For us, who live in Georgia, and other unfriendly states,  it may be quite important.  Even the University of Georgia, which has tried for years to get coverage on domestic partnerships, has not been able to succeed in that.  The last attempt, last year, got through the Board of Regents, but was rejected by the state legislature and governer.  

Briefly, and I'll quote from my husband Glenn's letter to University of Georgia Human Resources, inquiring on the matter:

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), a part of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), issued guidance on Friday 14 March 2014 regarding family medical coverage of married same-sex spouses under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). It clearly applies to group plans and couples regardless of the state in which they live.
From the NPR segment, here's the FAQ on the CMS guidelines:  

To summarize, it looks like

1. Insurance companies must offer coverage to married spouses, regardless of gender and (especially!)  regardless of the state they live in.  

2. This does not appear to me to be limited to insurance policies obtained from the exchange through  

3.  Policies grandfathered (since ACA passage?) are exempt.  

4. This addresses only legally married couples and not domestic partnerships or civil unions.  

All this is just my own interpretation, but the FAQ linked to above seems to agree.  The foundation for all of this is, of course, the Supreme Court rejection of Section 3 of DOMA.  

So am I over reaching here in my reaction?  


Tue Dec 02, 2008 at 05:01 AM PST

GA-Sen: Thanks Team Obama!

by wayne

The Senate contest between Jim Martin and incumbent Republican Golf-Until-You-Drop Saxby Chambliss advanced to a runoff due mostly to the Martin Campaign, local volunteers and the return of the national campaign to the state. Several here, including brownsox, and kos, have written of the help Team Obama has given Martin. Another to add: a Phone Bank Volunteer in California learned that a 95-year old Athens voter needed a ride to the polls and that need made it to the county Voter Ride director. Thanks to all those who came, made calls, made donations or helped in other ways. - Glenn

Jim Martin; Jim Martin Tour, Crawford GA, 30 October 2008

On the web:
Jim Martin for U.S. Senate
Orange to Blue ActBlue Page
MyBO Phonebanking


Democratic Party Victory Parade; Crawford, GA, 08 November, 2008

Most everything was traditional; celebrating the election winners (mostly Democrats), the route down Smokey Road into Crawford, the lead unit, the cars, throwing candy to the kids, and the donkey. But the occasion! Barack Obama, President-elect of the United States!

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Thu Nov 06, 2008 at 03:14 AM PST

GA-Athens GOTV: Obamatic For The People

by wayne

Obamatic For the People, Bumper Sticker; Athens GA

A small personal view of a massive local get out the vote: Images of voters on election day in Athens, Georgia, the home of Weaver D's Soul-Food Restaurant and R.E.M.

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Sat Nov 01, 2008 at 05:50 PM PDT

GA-Sen: Crawford GA Welcomes Jim Martin

by wayne

He had heard of the small but enthusiastic Democratic Party in Oglethorpe County, so Jim Martin, our Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate, stopped his Road to Change Bus Thursday afternoon in Crawford while on his many-day tour across Georgia gathering votes in what is now a very close race against incumbent Saxby Chambliss. With him was Jim Powell, Democratic candidate for District 4 State Public Service Commissioner, who we learned that afternoon had just been reinstated on the ballot by the Georgia Supreme Court after being disqualified by Republican Secretary of State, Karen Handel.

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