Main | Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Syracuse University Takes The Sting Out Of Taxed Partner Benefits

Syracuse University will now pay LGBT employees a $1000 bonus to defray the tax penalty of having their partners on their insurance.
Syracuse University has adopted a policy -- possibly the first in higher education -- of paying $1,000 each to its gay and lesbian employees who use the university's domestic partner program to provide health insurance for their partners. While health insurance benefits for employees and their spouses and children are not taxable under federal law, health insurance that an employee receives for a partner who is not a spouse recognized under state law is taxable. Providing funds to offset this tax -- or "grossing up" -- was promoted by the university as a way to be equitable in benefits at a time that gay people in New York State can't marry and obtain the same benefits as their heterosexual colleagues.

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