Unless you took an extension, your federal tax return is due today. This article by Tara Bernard explains how same-sex couples face serious tax disadvantages compared to opposite-sex couples. That's because the federal government will not recognize same-sex couples as married (even when they are married under state law). Bernard's article reviews "Unequal Taxation and Undue Burdens for LGBT Families," a new report from the Movement Advancement Project, Family Equality Council, and the Center for American Progress.
Here's an executive summary of the report:
Unequal Taxation and Undue Burdens for LGBT Families provides a groundbreaking, in-depth look at the income tax inequities faced by LGBT families, illustrating how many tax exemptions, credits and deductions designed to help families ease the financial burdens of raising children are unavailable to families with LGBT parents. The report also documents how, because LGBT families are denied federal recognition of their marriages and denied joint filing status due to the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), they face higher taxes on family health insurance benefits and additional gift and estate tax liability—and must misrepresent and “carve up” their families when filing taxes with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Unequal Taxation and Undue Burdens for LGBT Families also outlines recommendations for amending and repealing archaic and discriminatory tax laws that harm children who have LGBT parents.
Click on the chart below for illustrations showing the financial impact of the differential treatment between same-sex and opposite-sex couples.