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Published May 14, 2013, 05:59 PM

Gay couples in Minnesota will now be able to receive hundreds of benefits that come with marriage

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV)-- Gay couples in Minnesota will now be able to receive hundreds of benefits that come with marriage. The bill changes current laws to make marriage "gender neutral," granting "state" benefits to same-sex couples.

By: Becky Parker, WDAY

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV)-- Gay couples in Minnesota will now be able to receive hundreds of benefits that come with marriage. The bill changes current laws to make marriage "gender neutral," granting "state" benefits to same-sex couples.

A list compiled by pro-gay marriage Project 515 shows there are at least 515 benefits extended to married couples in the state of Minnesota.

Starting August 1st, same-sex couples can get those benefits, but there are still many federal benefits that leave them out.

There are more than 10-thousand same sex couples living in Minnesota.

Being recognized as a family unit through marriage in the state has significant impacts.

In healthcare, gays will now be allowed to visit spouses in the hospital, be the first person the doctor consults if their spouse cannot consent to treatment, and get coverage under a spouse's health and accident insurance.

They can also get workers' compensation if a spouse is killed at work, and have the right to control what is done with a spouse's remains.

Families of people killed during crimes are entitled to restitution, and The surviving spouse of a law enforcement officer killed on duty may receive a $100,000 payment.

But same-sex couples still won't have all of the same rights as their opposite sex counterparts.

Since the Federal government does not recognize gay marriage, they can't file joint federal income tax, collect a deceased spouse's Social Security… or get over a thousand more benefits.

The bill passed with most lawmakers voting along party lines.

All three District 4 legislators, Paul Marquart, Ben Lien, and Kent Eken, voted yes.

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