Gay couples find uneven access to health insurance - | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Gay couples find uneven access to health insurance

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Associated Press

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Gay couples are finding that access to family plans under President Barack Obama's health law is not guaranteed this year.

Options for same-sex couples run the gamut.

In Iowa, where gay marriage is legal, insurers in the new marketplace offer plans to gay couples and families. But in Tennessee, the major company in the marketplace does not offer coverage at all to same-sex couples. Policies vary by insurer in Florida. And in Ohio, a couple has sued for access to family plans.

The federal government has belatedly sought to solve the inconsistencies. The Obama administration told insurers this month that if they offer spousal coverage to heterosexual couples, they must provide it to legally married, same-sex couples.

Companies are encouraged to comply voluntarily, but aren't required to until next year.

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