Ruling sparks debate on retroactive gay rights - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Ruling sparks debate on retroactive gay rights

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By DAVE COLLINS

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) - Gay rights advocates are calling a Connecticut Supreme Court ruling a step forward for same-sex couples seeking rights and benefits for which they weren't legally entitled before state laws allowed them to marry.

The ruling on Wednesday adds to a debate on whether gay marriage rights should be applied retroactively and whether same-sex couples should be granted rights and benefits like Social Security survivor payments dating back before gay marriage laws.

Connecticut's court ruled that a lesbian woman whose wife died in a medical malpractice case can sue a doctor over the loss of her wife's companionship and income, although that right to sue was limited to heterosexual couples at the time.

Gay rights advocates expect other states to look to Connecticut's ruling as similar gay marriage issues arise.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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