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Supreme Court Declines To Hear Live-In Partner Benefits Case

The Michigan Supreme Court has declined to hear a challenge to the policy that allows live-in partners of state employees to be covered by their health coverage.

As we hear from The Michigan Public Radio Network’s Rick Pluta, the court’s decision allows the policy to stand. 

The benefit was negotiated as part of most state employee contracts. Attorney General Bill Schuette challenged the benefit. He says providing insurance for live-in partners violates the state’s ban on recognition of same-sex marriage and civil unions. The amendment was approved by voters in 2004.

Schuette also said the policy discriminates against married couples. Lower courts dismissed Schuette’s lawsuit. They said the policy does not make any distinction between people in same-sex relationships and male-female relationships. About 150 state employees currently have live-in partners and their children covered by their health plans.

Rick Pluta is Senior Capitol Correspondent for the Michigan Public Radio Network. He has been covering Michigan’s Capitol, government, and politics since 1987. His journalism background includes stints with UPI, The Elizabeth (NJ) Daily Journal, The (Pontiac, MI) Oakland Press, and WJR. He is also a lifelong public radio listener.
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