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Court Rules Retired Gay Teacher Is Entitled To Spousal Benefits

Robert F. Bukaty

A Pennsylvania court has ruled that a teacher who retired before same-sex marriage was legalized is entitled to health care benefits for his husband. reports that Gateway School District in suburban Pittsburgh denied the man's request to retroactively sign up for spousal benefits when he married his longtime partner in 2014. He had retired in 2013, before same-sex marriage was legally recognized in Pennsylvania.

The district says it has a policy barring retirees from adding a new spouse to their retirement benefits. It argued it could not make an exception for same-sex couples.

On Wednesday, a Commonwealth Court panel concurred with an arbitrator who found that the man would have married his partner and signed him up for health care had it been legally allowed.