State Farm insurance to start offering same-sex benefits

Sat. May 14, 2011 11:41 AM by News Staff

Bloomington, Ill. - State Farm insurance will soon start offering health and other benefits to the same-sex partners of the company's employees.

The Bloomington, Ill.-based company said Friday that benefits will be provided to couples who are in legally recognized relationships, including marriages and civil unions.

The move comes as Illinois gets ready to implement a law that will allow gays and lesbians to enter into civil unions. The law takes effect on June 1.

The company told the Associated Press that the law does not legally obligate them to expand their benefits to the extent that they are doing, but that they felt this was the only way to be fair.

Same-sex partners will now be able to qualify for medical, dental, vision, life, voluntary accidental death and dismemberment, and long-term care insurance.

State Farm has 68,000 employees nationwide. The company said it does not anticipate the benefits expansion to significantly impact the bottom line.