Missouri Supreme Court Rules Against Survivor’s Benefits For Same-Sex Couples

The Missouri Supreme Court in Jefferson City | Photo courtesy of Creative Commons
The Missouri Supreme Court in Jefferson City | Photo courtesy of Creative Commons

The Missouri Supreme Court ruling against the same-sex partner of a deceased highway patrolman will likely bar anyone in a same-sex relationship in Missouri from collecting survivor benefits. Kelly Glossip had challenged two statutes: one that provides benefits to surviving spouses of highway patrolmen killed in the line of duty, and the second that specified that “spouse’’ referred only to a man or a woman in a heterosexual marriage.

With the assistance of the ACLU, Glossip had contended in his suit that the restrictions denying him benefits violated his equal protection rights under the Missouri constitution. The state Supreme Court disagreed, ruling 5-2 that Glossip was denied benefits because he wasn’t married, “not because of his sexual orientation.” The fact that Glossip couldn’t legally have married Dennis Englehard, a Missouri state trooper who was killed on Christmas Day in 2009, wasn’t addressed – since Glossip did not challenge the provision of the state constitution barring same-sex marriage.

Read more from the St. Louis Beacon


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