U of M to drop same-sex domestic partner benefit coverage

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About 11 months after same-sex marriage was made legal in Minnesota, the University of Minnesota says it's dropping its same-sex domestic partnership benefit program, the Minnesota Daily reports.

U of M Benefits Director Dann Chapman says in order for employees to continue to get benefits for their partners, they must be married.

The Daily says 114 U of M employees received same-sex domestic partner benefits last year. Since the same sex-marriage law went into effect Aug. 1, 2013, the number of employees receiving benefits reportedly has dropped by one-third.

Stef Wilenchek, Director of the University’s Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, Ally Programs Office, told the Daily that the policy change will negatively affect some because the employee might not want to get married.

The change in policy isn't immediate. Same-sex domestic partner benefits at the U of M will be phased out Dec. 31, according to university website.

The U of M isn't the first employer to phase out same-sex domestic partnership benefits following the passage of the same-sex marriage law.

The Mayo Clinic announced a day before that law took effect last year that employees in same-sex domestic partnerships had to get married or lose benefits for their partners.

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