New Mexico has taken a further step towards marriage equality after its state insurance regulator announced Wednesday that insurance companies doing business in the state must offer the same discounts to married same-sex couples that they do opposite sex ones.
Eight of New Mexico’s 33 counties, taking in almost 60 percent of the state’s population, have begun marrying same-sex couples and state Insurance Superintendent John Franchini said couples with valid marriage licenses must receive equal treatment from insurance providers.
In making his decision Fanchini cited an equal rights provision in the New Mexico state constitution and also a recent Supreme Court ruling that a photography business that refused to photograph a same-sex couple’s commitment ceremony had illegally discriminated against them.
New Mexico does not have a formal ban on same-sex marriage and county clerks have sought a ruling from the New Mexico state Supreme Court on whether they can marry same-sex couples.
The New Mexico Supreme Court is expected to release its ruling on the matter any day now, having heard the case last month.