Supreme Court Steers Toward Federalism in 'Windsor' Oral Arguments

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Calling on the U.S. Supreme Court to act, Solicitor General Donald B. Verrilli Jr., during oral arguments March 27, told the justices in no uncertain terms that the federal Defense of Marriage Act represents discrimination against gays and lesbians and is inconsistent with the court's—and the country's—understanding of “equal treatment under the law.”
But issues outside the case and complaints about the executive branch's handling of it obscured any view of DOMA's future (United States v. Windsor,U.S., No. 12-307, argued 3/27/13).
The outcome of the case will present challenges to estate and tax practitioners if Section 3 of the Act is ruled unconstitutional, in areas including income, estate, and gift taxes.