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With DOMA Struck Down, N.H. Retirement System Prepares To Roll Out Benefits

The effect of the U.S. Supreme Court striking down the Defense of Marriage Act is now being felt in the Granite State.

The New Hampshire Retirement System is asking public employees and retirees whether they are involved in a same-sex marriage.

The June 26 Supreme Court ruling now means New Hampshire pensioners who are part of a same-sex marriage will be eligible for a medical subsidy benefit for spouses, among other benefits.

New Hampshire Retirement System spokesman Marty Karlon says officials are reaching out to members now so they can be prepared once the new benefits kick in.

“It’s not a question of whether same-sex couples are entitled to the same benefits, it’s just more a question of as of when and how are we going to implement it going forward.”

Karlon says since sending out the form to employees last week, the retirement system has heard from about 40 same-sex couples.

He says the system is awaiting guidance from the IRS on implementing any benefit revisions.

There also is the unanswered question of whether those changes will be retroactive to when New Hampshire legalized same-sex marriage. 

Michael serves as NHPR's Program Director. Michael came to NHPR in 2012, working as the station's newscast producer/reporter. In 2015, he took on the role of Morning Edition producer. Michael worked for eight years at The Telegraph of Nashua, covering education and working as the metro editor.

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