June 11, 2012 10:46 am

Tax Refund Given to Same-Sex Spouse

The federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which was enacted in 1996, defines marriage for federal law purposes as between a man and a woman. Recently, a federal appellate court said that DOMA is unconstitutional because it violates the Equal Protection clause in the U.S. constitution. However, that court continued an injunction that a lower court had imposed on giving tax refunds to same-sex married couples until the U.S. Supreme Court ruled on the matter.

Now, however, a district court in New York has granted an estate tax refund of $363,053 to a same-sex spouse, who was also the executor of the estate. The refund represents the federal estate tax that would not have been paid if the spouse’s estate had claimed the marital deduction on the estate tax return that was filed in 2009.

Source: Edith Schlain Windsor; DC NY, No. 1:10-cv-08435

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Tax Glossary

Earned income

Compensation for performing personal services. You must have earned income for a deductible IRA or to claim the earned income credit.

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