Part I: The Legal Backdrop
- The Windsor decision
- – Overview and analysis
- – What the Court didn't decide (constitutionality of state bans; Section 2 of DOMA regarding same sex marriages from other states)
- Subsequent state cases (recent Ohio decision requiring recognition of out-of-state marriages, recent Michigan decision on non-university domestic partner benefits)
- Important questions left outstanding
- – State of celebration vs. state of residence for purposes of federal benefits and other issues (tax, Social Security, etc.)
- – Constitutionality of state bans
- – "Level of scrutiny" for discrimination based on sexual orientation
Part II: Benefits on Campus
- Pre-Windsor overview
- – Before and after: same-sex spouses v. domestic partners
- Public v. private institutions
- – Public/governmental plans v. ERISA-covered plans
- Health and welfare plans
- – Tax treatment group health plan coverage
- – Tax rules under cafeteria plans: premiums, FSAs, HRAs, HSAs
- – HIPAA special enrollment rights
- – COBRA coverage
- – FMLA rights
- – ACA employer shared responsibility provisions
- Tax-qualified retirement plans
- – Qualified joint and survivor annuities (ERISA plans)
- – Spousal consent: elections, QPSAs, loans, beneficiaries (ERISA plans)
- – ERISA disclosure requirements (ERISA plans)
- – Qualified domestic relations orders: recognition, tax treatment
- – Hardship withdrawals
- – Distributions to beneficiaries
- – Defined Benefit 415(b) Limit
- Other college/university considerations
- – Tuition benefits for spouses/dependents
- – University health services for spouses/dependents
- Open issues
- – State laws – state of celebration v. state of residence
- – Retroactivity: administrative issues
Questions and Answers
Part III: Immigration Issues with Foreign Students, Faculty and Staff
- BIA Caselaw: Zeleniak
- Other relationships (civil partnerships, stable partners)?
- What is happening at the agencies?
- – U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)
- – Department of State
- – Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP)
- – Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Customs and Border Protection (CBP)
- How should campuses now handle immigration benefits?
- What if granting benefits violates school's rules or beliefs?
- What if granting benefits violates staff members' religion or beliefs?
- What about other issues: cultural taboos: US and international students?
Part IV: Colleges & Universities in States with Constitutional Bans on Same-Sex Marriage
- Can public institutions grant benefits to same-sex couples despite state constitutional restrictions on marriage or providing marriage-like status/benefits to same-sex couples?
- Are these restrictions themselves now vulnerable post-Windsor?
- Statements by attorneys general (Georgia) and legal challenges (Michigan)
- Various practical methods for providing benefits in such states
Questions and Answers