Prop Appraiser Adopts Domestic Partnership Tax Equity

Palm Beach County Property Appraiser Gary Nikolits has adopted a policy that will reimburse employees who elect to provide health insurance to their domestic partners.

Currently, the portion of employee insurance premiums paid by the property appraiser’s office is considered taxable income for same-sex or opposite-sex domestic partners. Pre-tax premium benefits for married couples are not taxable income under federal law.

“There is a disparity between the benefits received by married couples and those received by domestic partners,” Nikolits said. “This new policy will level the playing field for both married couples and unmarried couples who are in long-term committed relationships.”

Employees who qualify as domestic partners and elect to provide health insurance to their partner will receive a tax equity reimbursement aimed at mitigating the impact of the additional imputed income tax. The new policy, which goes into effect in January, was initiated following a request from Rand Hoch, president of the Palm Beach County Human Rights Council.