Important benefit information for employees who participate in a health plan offered through the State of Illinois Department of Central Management Services (“CMS”) AND have entered into a same-sex marriage in a state, country, or jurisdiction whose laws authorize same-sex marriage.
In Revenue Ruling 2013-17, effective September 16, 2013, the U.S. Department of the Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) held that same-sex couples who have legally married in jurisdictions whose laws authorize same-sex marriages will be treated as married for federal income tax purposes. The holdings of the Revenue Ruling apply even if the couple resides in a state, such as Illinois, that does not recognize the validity of same-sex marriages.
NOTE: Revenue Ruling 2013-17 does not affect the treatment of opposite-sex civil union partnerships or same-sex civil union partnerships that did not result in a marriage.
Do I Need to Take Any Action?
- NO -- If you HAVE NOT ENTERED into a same-sex marriage in a state, country or jurisdiction whose laws authorize same-sex marriage, then no action is required.
- YES -- If you HAVE ENTERED into a same-sex marriage prior to September 16, 2013, in a state, country or jurisdiction whose laws authorize same-sex marriage, and you wish to add your spouse to, or change your designation for, your health insurance coverage. Action is required: You will need to complete a paper enrollment form (see link below) and submit the form and a marriage certificate to UPB Benefits Services by close of business on Thursday, November 14, 2013.
For Employees Who Participate in a CMS Health Plan:
- Participating employees who provide a marriage certificate from a jurisdiction whose laws authorize same-sex marriage are eligible to provide coverage for their same-sex spouse for group insurance purposes, are eligible for pretax premium deductions, and will not have the value of that coverage treated as imputed income. See below for a list of states, countries and other jurisdictions whose laws authorize same-sex marriage as of September 16, 2013.
- The Revenue Ruling is considered a qualifying change in status, which allows the same changes to coverage that a new marriage would, i.e. adding the spouse, adding stepchildren, opting out of, or enrolling in a CMS provided health plan.
- If you entered into a same-sex marriage prior to September 16, 2013, you must submit any enrollment change request within 60 days of September 16, 2013.
- If you enter into a same-sex marriage on or after September 16, 2013, the normal 60-day rule for submitting an enrollment change request will apply.
- For information regarding filing an amended tax return to claim a refund on income taxes paid on the value of employer-provided health coverage for a same-sex spouse, please review the Frequently Asked Questions from the IRS website or consult your tax advisor.
What Do I Need To Do?
Employees who wish to provide health care coverage for a spouse must provide documentation of the marriage when adding the spouse to their health insurance coverage. If you are currently providing health care insurance for a same-sex domestic partner or same-sex civil union partner on your CMS health insurance, and you entered into a same-sex marriage in another state, country or jurisdiction whose laws authorize same-sex marriages, then you must submit a copy of your marriage certificate and a paper Group Insurance Enrollment form, to the UPB Benefits Service office for your campus by close of business on Thursday, November 14, 2013. The effective date of coverage will be the date you submit your request.
After receiving your marriage documentation, CMS will change the designation of any child receiving coverage as a “civil union child” to a “stepchild.” CMS will then provide you with a verification form reflecting these changes.
Please provide a copy (not the original) of your marriage certificate to UPB Benefits Services via fax, mail, or in-person at:
Urbana Campus – 217-333-3111
506 S. Wright, Room 177 HAB MC-318, Urbana, IL 61801
Chicago Campus – 312-996-6471
809 S. Marshfield Ave, 1st Floor MC-547, Chicago, IL 60612
Springfield Campus – 217-206-7144
One University Plaza, HRB 18, Springfield, IL 62703
Documentation Fax Number – 217-244-3135
Jurisdictions Whose Laws Authorize Same-sex Marriages:
The following list was provided by CMS. Any updates to the list will be posted in NESSIE.
- Rhode Island (August 1, 2013)
- Minnesota (August 1, 2013)
- Delaware (July 1, 2013)
- Maryland (January 1, 2013)
- Maine (December 29, 2012)
- Washington (December 5, 2012)
- New York State (July 24, 2011)
- New Hampshire (January 1, 2010)
- Connecticut (Civil Union Partners allowed October 1, 2005 through September 30, 2010. Civil Unions merged into marriages as of October 1, 2010)
- District of Columbia (March 3, 2010)
- Vermont (September 1, 2009)
- Coquille Nation, Oregon (May 20, 2009)
- Iowa (April 24, 2009)
- Massachusetts (May 17, 2004)
- California (May 15, 2008 through November 4, 2008 and since June 26, 2013)
- These countries: Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Denmark, France, Iceland, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, South Africa, Sweden, Uruguay and New Zealand
Contact your campus UPB Benefits Services office by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or using the campus contact information above.