Updated 2 yearss ago
More than half of the companies on the Best Companies to Work For list offer medical insurance and other benefits to employees' domestic partners. Those 54 companies are mostly small and midsized firms — only six have more than 250 employees.
Although cohabitating unmarried opposite-sex couples can use domestic partner benefits, usually same-sex couples are the intended users. For that reason, offering such coverage was once a controversial move.
Most companies report a positive response to the benefit, although some companies that offer the benefit say no employee has enrolled a domestic partner.
Companies cited a variety of reasons for offering the benefits — from "it's just the right thing to do" to client requirements to the competitive advantage it gives them.
No. 37 / Midsized Company -
"We're thought of as a progressive employer," says Laura M. Sapp, director of human resources at Leesburg-based Restor Telecom. The company began offering the option in 2009, when its research showed how many employers were offering it. Restor had a number of employees in domestic partner relationships.
[Photo: Jeffrey Camp]
Coral Springs -
No. 19 / Small Company -
"The attraction to employees of a comprehensive benefits and retirement package has always been well-documented," says Lauren Hartnett, a marketing specialist at staffing agency TekPartners. The Coral Springs-based company began offering the benefits five years ago. Even with tax and cost issues, Hartnett says, the company's experience has been positive. "We designed our benefits package to fit a diverse group of people, which in turn gives us a competitive recruitment edge."
[Photo: Eileen Escarda]
Each benefits provider has rules about who qualifies as a domestic partner, and couples may need to submit paperwork — notarized affidavit, proof of joint bank account, shared mortgage or shared vehicle ownership, for example — to substantiate their relationship. Plus, payroll deductions have to be set up carefully, as healthcare premium payments for domestic partners are not pretax as they are for dependents.
Who Offers Domestic Partner Benefits
54 of the 100 companies on our list
39 Florida-based companies on the list
68% of small companies on the list
71% of midsized companies on the list
19% of large companies on the list
Breakdown by Industry
|Staffing/employee leasing/career management||4|
|Source: Best Companies survey|
Florida's Best Companies to Work For 2011
|Best Large Companies
• (250 or more employees)
|Executive Sounding Board
• What makes your company a Best Company to Work For?
|Best Midsized Companies
• (50 to 249 employees)
|Domestic Partner Benefits
• Catching On
|Best Small Companies
• (15 to 49 employees)
• Engineering a Best Company
• Long-Term Relationships
|Download Expanded Lists
• via TopRank Florida
• Making the Cut
• Why I Work Here