Smith College to Offset Unequal Health Insurance Tax Levied on Same-Sex Partners
NORTHAMPTON, Mass.—This week, Smith College will implement a plan to offset the higher tax rate on health insurance that employees with same-sex partners pay as compared to employees with opposite-sex partners.
For more than 10 years, Smith has offered health insurance and other benefits to same-sex domestic partners and their families. In doing so, the college provides equitable access to quality health insurance for employees and their families.
However, under the federal Defense of Marriage Act, employees covering same-sex partners have been taxed at a higher rate than employees covering opposite-sex partners. This is due to the fact that employees are precluded from paying for a domestic partner’s insurance with pre-tax dollars. In addition, the college’s portion of insurance payments for the domestic partner is taxed to the employee as imputed income.
Effective immediately, the college will make health insurance benefits affordable equally to all of the college’s employees and families with a "gross-up" of wages for employees in same-sex partnerships who currently have their spouses or families enrolled in health insurance.
Smith College educates women of promise for lives of distinction. One of the largest women’s colleges in the United States, Smith enrolls 2,600 students from nearly every state and 62 other countries.