Gay couples file new lawsuit seeking benefits
LEWIS AND CLARK COUNTY
A civil-rights organization has filed a new lawsuit against the state in an attempt to win for gay couples the same benefits that married couples have.
The American Civil Liberties Union of Montana filed its amended complaint on behalf of seven gay couples Monday.
The Montana Supreme Court rejected its first lawsuit in December, saying it was too broad and didn't identify specific laws that are discriminatory.
In the amended lawsuit, attorney James Goetz identifies numerous statutes. The plaintiffs say those laws prevent them from receiving financial protections given to police officers and spouses and from designating their partners as a beneficiaries for worker's compensation.
Other laws exclude gay couples from financial protections for surviving spouses, authority over end-of-life decisions and financial protections due to illness or disability.