Gay couples free to buy CalPERS insurance

06/27/2013 12:00 AM

06/27/2013 7:51 AM

The U.S. Supreme Court's decision to overturn the federal Defense of Marriage Act clears the way for CalPERS to begin offering its nursing-home insurance coverage to gay couples after a three-year legal battle.

The big pension fund sells so-called long-term care coverage to about 160,000 public employees in California, but was prevented from offering the benefit to gay couples because of DOMA.

The CalPERS case began when Mike Dragovich, a nurse at UC San Francisco's hospital, tried to buy the insurance coverage for his husband, Michael Gaitley. The two were married in 2008 during a window when same-sex marriage was legal in California. Dragovich was denied the right to buy the coverage, and he and several others instituted a class-action lawsuit against CalPERS and the federal government in 2010.

Call The Bee's Dale Kasler, (916) 321-1066. Follow him on Twitter @dakasler.

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