Are You Paying More Taxes?
CNN reports this week that same-sex couples actually end up paying more in taxes than straight couples. Because the federal government refuses to recognize gay marriage (even in states where it’s legal, thanks to DOMA), same-sex couples must file taxes separately, yielding much higher payouts compared to straight couples who are married in the same states.
So how much does it amount to exactly? Up to $6,000 per year.
CNN studied tax returns from both same-sex and opposite-sex couples with H&R Block. When all things were equal (except sexual orientation) same-sex couples paid more in taxes because of having to file separately and forgoing the head-of-household and dependents. Even though more than 12 states grant full or partial marriage rights to gay and lesbian couples (not PA) and that a Gallup poll shows that more than half of Americans say they support marriage equality, a financial imbalance persists along with a civil rights one.
No wonder the feds don’t want to recognize same-sex marriage. They’re making a bundle!
And the results differ from state to state. In additional to federal taxes, same-sex couples also lose out on the state level by not being able to claim marriage. Couples must fill out double the returns and pay higher fees to preparers. They also lose out on incentives that come from filing jointly – like combining incomes and deductions to take advantage of lower tax rates.
“It’s costing families thousands of dollars a year,” Ken Weissenberg, a partner with accounting firm EisnerAmper, told CNN, “as well as the emotional pain and suffering.” Weissenberg is himself in a same-sex marriage and estimates that he pays as much as $5,000 more each year because he’s married to another man. “But it shouldn’t stop anyone from getting married,” he says. “If I had to pay twice as much in taxes to be married to my husband, I would.”
Check it out: