Saturday, August 17, 2013
Federal agencies are scrambling to figure out regulations following the Supreme Court’s recent DOMA decision.
Specifically, the IRS must decide whether to tax same-sex couples based on where they live or where they were married (the place of celebration), a decision that could affect the cost of health insurance.
Same-sex couples living in the 13 states recognizing same-sex marriage and the District of Columbia will not have to pay federal income tax on the value of employee health insurance coverage.
If the IRS goes against their standard practice and decides to follow the place of celebration standards, couples living in states that don’t recognize same-sex marriage could still avoid paying federal income tax on their spouse’s health insurance, but they will still have to pay state income tax. The Office of Personnel Management has decided to follow the place of celebration standard, which gives hope to same-sex marriage advocates.
See Michelle Andrews, Same-Sex Couples Seeking Insurance Wait for IRS Rules, NPR, Aug. 13, 2013.