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Employment Law Update in Maryland – Addendum

Author: David W.Hotes Date: 08/27/2008

Categories: Employment Law & Litigation

Maryland Developments

Domestic Partner Benefits – Family Coverage Expansion Act

The Maryland General Assembly enacted a law which requires insurers who issue health insurance in the State of Maryland to provide coverage for domestic partners and dependents of domestic partners.

  • See 2007 Md. House Bill No. 1057
  • Full enrolled text – http://senate.state.md.us/2007RS/bills/hb/hb1057e.pdf 
  • Effective June 1, 2007
  • Insurance Commission promulgated regulations on January 10, 2008 on an emergency basis, and they have been re-adopted as of July 8, 2008
  • Regulations require insurers to provide such domestic partner benefits at the request of policy holder and define the proof which can be required by the insurer to demonstrate the relationship
  • The burden is on the insured to request the benefits
  • Law applies only to health insurance policies, and does not require employers to provide additional “domestic partner” benefits to their employees
  • An employer who desires to extend additional benefits, e.g. leave to take care of a sick domestic partner, it may do so, but such additional benefits are not required under the law