UK and UofL May Be Violating Ky. Constitution

The Attorney General’s office said two state universities may be violating Kentucky’s constitution.

The University of Kentucky and the University of Louisville may be in violation of Kentucky law by extending health insurance coverage to domestic partners of employees.

Assistant Attorney General James Herrick wrote his opinion. He said the definition of domestic partners used by the universities is a problem. Herrick said the benefit is premised upon the recognition of a legal status of two individuals, similar to marriage.

The so-called marriage amendment to the Kentucky constitution states that only a marriage between one man and one woman should be valid or recognized.

The Attorney General’s office believes this prevents a state institution from recognizing a legal status similar to that of marriage for people who are not married.

Herrick said one way around the problem would be to expand the definition to include any member of an employee’s household.

The University of Kentucky voted earlier this year to offer domestic partner benefits, while the University of Louisville already offers the benefits.