- Days left

IRS: Legally Married Same-Sex Couples Can File Joint Returns in All States

IRS Allows Married Same-Sex Couples to File Taxes Together
By MARTIN CRUTSINGER

WASHINGTON -- The government on Thursday said that all legally married gay couples will be able to file joint federal tax returns even if they reside in states that do not recognize same-sex marriages.

The decision came in rules issued by the Treasury Department and the Internal Revenue Service designed to implement the tax aspects of the Supreme Court's decision in June that invalidated a section of the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act.

"Today's ruling provides certainty and clear, coherent tax filing guidance for all legally married same-sex couples nationwide," Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew said in a statement.

"This ruling assures legally married same-sex couples that they can move freely throughout the country knowing that their federal filing status will not change," Lew said.

Chad Griffin, president of the Human Rights Campaign, the nation's largest gay rights group, praised the government's action.

"With today's ruling, committed and loving gay and lesbian married couples will now be treated equally under our nation's federal tax laws, regardless of what state they call home," Griffin said in a statement.

The Treasury said that with the new rules, same-sex couples will be treated as married for all federal tax purposes including income and gift and estate taxes.

The rules will cover all federal tax provisions where marriage is a factor including the taxpayer's filing status, personal and dependent exemptions and standard deductions.

The new rules will cover any same-sex marriage legally entered into in any state where such a marriage is recognized. It will also cover such marriages recognized by U.S. territories, foreign nations and the District of Columbia.

The government said that the statute of limitations for filing a refund claim was generally three years from the date the return was filed or two years from the date the tax was paid, whichever was later. As a result, the government said that refund claims can still be filed for tax years 2010, 2011 and 2012.

The new IRS and Treasury regulations follow rules changes and guidance that have already been issued by other federal agencies including the office of Personnel Management and the departments of Defense and Health and Human Services.

The Supreme Court ruling came in a case filed by Edie Windsor, a resident of New York, who was forced to pay federal estate taxes after the death of Thea Spyer, her lesbian spouse.

Increase your money and finance knowledge from home

Intro to Retirement

Get started early planning for your long term future.

View Course »

Intro to different retirement accounts

What does it mean to have a 401(k)? IRA?

View Course »

TurboTax Articles

Guide to Unemployment and Taxes

The IRS considers unemployment compensation to be taxable income?which you must report on your federal tax return. State unemployment divisions issue an IRS Form 1099-G to each individual who receives unemployment benefits during the year.

Guide to Taxes on Dividends

If you received dividends from any of your investments this year, you may have to pay income tax on these payments. The Internal Revenue Service considers dividends to be taxable income. So regardless of the amount of your dividend payments, you should report them on your tax return.

When the IRS Classifies Your Business as a Hobby

If your business claims a net loss for too many years, or fails to meet other requirements, the IRS may classify it as a hobby, which would prevent you from claiming a loss related to the business. If the IRS classifies your business as a hobby, you'll have to prove that you had a valid profit motive if you want to claim those deductions.

Add a Comment

*0 / 3000 Character Maximum

81 Comments

Filter by:
bearokc69

This may cause problems in states that don't recognize same-sex marriages from other states if that state requires them to use the same filing status as on their federal form

August 30 2013 at 2:03 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
DaltonCooper

I wonder how much longer God is going to allow the devil to rule the earth.
About time God does something about all of this stuff that is happening, especially in the United States.

August 30 2013 at 1:23 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to DaltonCooper's comment
betty_brock

AMEN. He has sent us warnings but we won't pay attention.

August 30 2013 at 9:11 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
DaltonCooper

What a joke this country has become!

August 30 2013 at 1:21 PM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply
psaund9860

Of course the IRS would like it this way.........a married couple with two incomes pay more in taxes than two "Single" or "Head of Household" taxpayers.

August 30 2013 at 12:45 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
Michael

Who cares who marry's who! It is between those two people themselves. Everybody has the right to make their own choices in life. As long as it doesn't harm anybody else. As for God he is the only one who has the right to pass judgement on others. As if anyone of us have not sinned at one time or another. As for paying tax's they should make it an equal amount for everybody. Refunds should be the same too.

August 30 2013 at 12:09 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
pinelsart

Worth repeating:
Again, you need to pay attention and stick this in your head: stop quoting and answering in the name of God. There is no God, and possibly God is an alien knowing how foolish humans are....
Just look around you and maybe you will see the light (reality)

August 30 2013 at 11:55 AM Report abuse -4 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to pinelsart's comment
xredsgguitarx

A true commie....You want everyone to express what they feel unless it is something you do not agree with. You need to start believing in god because I say so....Since you feel it is fine for you to deny that choice you should not have a problem with that statement.

August 30 2013 at 1:23 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
ntweety7777

this is wrong in so many ways. Same sex marriages, partners whatever should not have the same rights as us normal people. God created man and woman to be together not man with man or woman with woman, ewwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww

August 30 2013 at 11:22 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to ntweety7777's comment
bearokc69

I am Gay but I have never bought into the "marriage equality" argument. Because gays have the same rights as everyone else, what they are asking for is a special right that no one else had. What I mean by that is a gay person can marry anyone that they want according to the laws of their state. Generally that means they have to be a consenting adult, human, not a direct blood relative & a member of the opposite sex. What they are asking for is a special new right. Granted this new right will also allow straight same sex couples to marry if they so choose.

August 30 2013 at 2:14 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to bearokc69's comment
rdariusxxxx

Marriage equality is not a special right. Straight people would be allowed to marry someone of the same sex as well, if they so chose. Nobody would have different rights. They'd all be the same. Any consenting adult could marry any other consenting adult, regardless of gender.

I do not believe you are actually gay.

August 30 2013 at 3:17 PM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down
Ron

Ha, just wait for them to pay a marrage penalty tax that the normal married people have paid for years!!!

August 30 2013 at 11:18 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
Steve

What a clever way of Gov. tracking

August 30 2013 at 10:31 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
scottee

if congress scrapped the 73,000 pages of tax code.
and everyone just paid a small national sales tax with no deductions for anyone for anything...
they would probably collect more, everyone would pay some, the rich would pay more, we could close down the IRS, congress would have a lot less power, and April 15 would just be another spring day.

August 30 2013 at 9:03 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to scottee's comment
Mark

How would the rich pay more? You and a rich person each buy a washer/dryer for $2,500. Do they pay more. National sales tax penalized th poor as the rich do not really annually spend that much more, they save and invest their money. I see it everyday in my business. The IRS will never close as there will always be businesses, non profits and so on that will be audited or pay taxes.

August 30 2013 at 9:38 AM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to Mark's comment
xredsgguitarx

The rich already pay more in federal taxes that burden has been shifting since Reagan....However with Obamacare millions in the middle class will now pay more because their company funded health care will count as earned income. Bye bye Earned Income Credit for millions of middle class citizens.

August 30 2013 at 1:29 PM Report abuse rate up rate down
bearokc69

If they buy the same washer/dryer, they are paying the same. But get real, chances are the "rich" person is buying a higher end (more expensive) model and the "poor" person is buying the low end (cheaper model). Then there are the whole slew of things that the rich buy that poor people never will. So yes, the rich would pay more than the poor under a sales tax plan.

August 30 2013 at 2:09 PM Report abuse rate up rate down
rdrvr1752

No, it would only shift the burden of reporting, paying, and compliance to the vendor since the tax would be collected at the point of sale. Granted, most states already have a sales tax in place so computation methodologies would be added to those already in place. Sales tax delinquency is a significant problem for the states and there's no reason to expect that would change for a national sales tax, so a federal enforcement mechanism would still be needed. Since the IRS is charged with compliance enforcement for social security and federal unemployment taxes, those components would still be needed. Incidentally, the collection of withheld taxes (such as social security deducted, but never paid by the employer and in any other context would be called embezzlement as it is employee money) from failed businesses is an acute problem for IRS. To say that a national sales tax would solve all the problems of financing government (at whatever size) is naive.

August 30 2013 at 10:38 AM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply