Articles Posted in Gay marriage

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About two months ago, the Obama Administration announced that it would not defend the Defense of Marriage Act, the controversial act that restricts federal benefits for heterosexual couples. Since that announcement, Immigration Equality, a nonprofit based in Washington and New York that advocates in favor of gay immigrants, announced its plans to challenge the immigration law affecting same-sex couples.

As a New York Family Lawyer relates, gay couples face a conundrum when one of the two is a foreign national. They have to make hard decisions. Either the immigrant partner has to live in the shadows of America, hiding and becoming paranoid, or both have to move to a more accommodating country. The decision to leave your country of birth is a monumental leap, and some wonder why it should even have to be considered.

A NYC Family Lawyer shares that under current legislation, heterosexual couples can sponsor their spouse for visas or green cards. Recently, however, U.S. lawmakers reintroduced a bill that will allow gay Americans to do the same with their same-sex partners. The Uniting American Families Act was introduced in both the House and the Senate, and has the largest number of supporters it’s had since 2000 when it was introduced. While the bill has remained stagnant for the last decade, now there are 98 cosponsors of the bill in the House and 18 in the Senate. If passed, UAFA will allow Americans to sponsor their gay “permanent partner,” who is defined as someone who has the intention of maintaining a lifelong intimate relationship with his or her partner. Same sex marriage is on the agenda in counties like Brooklyn and The Bronx.

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Most people can just visit a tax consultant or fire up a computer to easily figure out their taxes. Married same-sex couples in California don’t have it quite that easy. Such marriages aren’t recognized by the federal government, which makes legal issues regarding them murky, to stay the least.

“So many people don’t know what the new federal tax requirements are and they affect 2010,” a tax attorney stated.

The tax attorney noted that, for the first time, registered same-sex couples in California must have a combined income on federal tax returns. This means if one partner makes $25,000 and the other $45,000, for a total of $70,000, they each have to file as if they made $35,000. The federal government does not recognize their marriage, so they have to each file $35,000 on separate federal returns.

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