Since a judge struck down the unconstitutional ban on gay marriage on Wednesday, hundreds have been married.
While those hundreds of new same sex couples have been legally married in Indiana, they still face some confusion regarding health insurance benefits, as the state continues to await the decision regarding Attorney General Greg Zoeller’s filing for a stay.
Until that decision is made these newlyweds don’t know whether their health benefits cover each other.
At the moment, there does not appear to be any clear answer to whether or not the health insurance will cover same sex couples who have married now that it is legal in Indiana. This has caused many people to find themselves struggling to communicate with their insurers and to try to determine what benefits they are entitled to receive. What’s worse is that because of the newness of the same sex marriage law, the Department of Insurance employees have yet to receive any guidance as to how to advice either consumers or providers.
The law in Indiana is brand new, which has left everyone wondering exactly how health insurance is impacted.
Many insurance companies and employers offering health plans are handling the questions on a case by case basis in order to make sure that at least some resolution can be found until the rules can be properly outlined in the state. A great deal has to do with the specific language that is used on employer benefits contracts and on the health plans, themselves.
At the moment, it is up to the employer to change the language of the contracts that they offer their employees for benefits, in order to make sure that same sex couples will be covered. They have the choice to either contact their insurers immediately, or to do so the next time the group policy is to be renewed. That said, at the moment, they can also choose not to change the policies or to cover same sex couples until the Indiana Insurance Department tells them otherwise.
The outcome of this confusion is that many same sex married couples are now finding themselves in a form of health insurance limbo that won’t be resolved until the state issues its official regulations.