Rules published by GSA in the April 10 Federal Register restrict eligibility previously granted for certain domestic partners for many travel, relocation and subsistence payments. Those benefits were extended to same-sex (although not opposite-sex) domestic partners who meet certain standards following White House orders of 2010 and 2011. However, GSA noted in its recent notice that while only a minority of states recognized same-sex marriage at the time, a majority of them do now. Under the new rules effective immediately, otherwise qualifying same-sex partners (and children, for benefits involving them) will be eligible only if they live in a state that does not recognize same-sex marriage and if they certify that they would marry if allowed by the laws of that state. The rules also formalize separate earlier policy extending benefits to same-sex marriages so long as they were recognized in the state in which the marriage occurred, regardless of the laws of the state of current residence, if different.
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