Lesbian Couple Sues, Claiming Constitutional Right to Fertility Treatment Coverage
A gay couple from New Jersey filed a lawsuit claiming a health insurance mandate on infertility violated their constitutional rights.
Erin and Marianne Krupa, a lesbian couple struggling to get pregnant due to infertility, are suing the commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Banking and Insurance, reports The New York Times. The couple’s lawsuit alleges the healthcare mandate is discriminating against their sexual orientation.
Erin, the one who is going to carry the child, was determined to be infertile after a doctor diagnosed her with benign cysts on her uterus and Stage 3 endometriosis. The couple’s healthcare provider, Horizon Blue Cross Shield, said that it would not provide coverage for Erin’s fertility treatments. They referred to a state insurance mandate that said that most women under 35 have to prove they are infertile by having unprotected sex for two years.
The couple, along with two other women, are suing the commissioner because they say the mandate is discriminating against them.
In the lawsuit, the plaintiffs claim that because the Supreme Court ruled in Obergefell v. Hodges that the 14th Amendment guaranteed same-sex couples the right to marry, it also protects their right to reproduce.
“These women are already going through what can be a difficult experience, and they have the added stress of affording it financially and the added insult of being treated like a second class citizen,” Grace Cretcher, the lawyer for the women, said. Cretcher also claimed that the language of the mandate violates gay women’s constitutional rights.
In the lawsuit, the plaintiffs ask for damages associated with having to pay for their own fertility treatments.
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