The BNA Tax and Accounting Center is the only planning resource to offer expert analysis and practice tools from the world's leading tax and accounting authorities along with the rest of the tax resources you need in one, integrated Center.
By Kathleen Ford Bay, Esq.
Lippincott Phelan Veidt PLLC, Austin, TX
The instructions to IRS Form 1040-X, Amended U.S. Individual Income Tax Return (revised as of December 2013), address same-sex partners' ability to amend their income tax returns to claim married filing jointly status: For federal tax purposes, individuals of the same sex are considered married if they were lawfully married in a state (or foreign country) whose laws authorize the marriage of two individuals of the same sex, even if the state (or foreign country) in which they now live does not recognize same-sex marriage. If you filed a return while you were married to someone of the same sex, you may be able to amend the return to file as married filing separately or married filing jointly.
Same-sex spouses. You may amend a return filed before September 16, 2013, to change your filing status to married filing separately or married filing jointly. But you are not required to change your filing status on a prior return, even if you amend that return for another reason. In either case, your amended return must be consistent with the filing status you choose. You must file the amended return before the expiration of the period of limitations.
Married filing jointly or separately often results in the payment of more income taxes than are assessed against two single people. This is often referred to as the "marriage penalty." Conversely, if estate taxes are due, the unlimited marital deduction will result in a deferral until the death of both spouses. Thus, it may be more likely that a surviving spouse will seek a refund of estate taxes as a result of the Supreme Court's decision in United States v. Windsor,1 than amend income tax returns. Will the duty of consistency require the survivor to amend the income tax return for the year of death and file it as married, filing jointly or separately? The instructions to IRS Form 706, United States Estate (and Generation-Skipping Transfer) Tax Return (revised as of August 2014), address same-sex marriage, but not as clearly as the income tax instructions:On June 26, 2013, the United States Supreme Court held that Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act, which said that the terms "marriage" and "spouse" only apply to heterosexual couples, was unconstitutional. (United States v. Windsor, 570 U.S. 12 (2013)). The ruling impacts a number of federal laws, including those governing the reporting and collection of federal taxes. For federal tax purposes, the IRS recognizes same-sex marriages that are valid in the state where they were entered into, regardless of the married couple's residence. See Rev. Rul. 2013-17, 2013-38 I.R.B. 201. If you believe the new law may affect your estate or gift tax liability or filing requirement, please continue to monitor www.IRS.gov for additional guidance on the application of Windsor.
For more information, in the Tax Management Portfolios, see Maule, 503 T.M., Deductions: Overview and Conceptual Aspects, Peyser, 631 T.M., Refund Litigation, and in Tax Practice Series, see ¶3820, Tax Returns and Information Returns.
1 570 U.S. 12, 133 S. Ct. 2675 (2013).
All Bloomberg BNA treatises are available on standing order, which ensures you will always receive the most current edition of the book or supplement of the title you have ordered from Bloomberg BNA’s book division. As soon as a new supplement or edition is published (usually annually) for a title you’ve previously purchased and requested to be placed on standing order, we’ll ship it to you to review for 30 days without any obligation. During this period, you can either (a) honor the invoice and receive a 5% discount (in addition to any other discounts you may qualify for) off the then-current price of the update, plus shipping and handling or (b) return the book(s), in which case, your invoice will be cancelled upon receipt of the book(s). Call us for a prepaid UPS label for your return. It’s as simple and easy as that. Most importantly, standing orders mean you will never have to worry about the timeliness of the information you’re relying on. And, you may discontinue standing orders at any time by contacting us at 1.800.960.1220 or by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Put me on standing order at a 5% discount off list price of all future updates, in addition to any other discounts I may quality for. (Returnable within 30 days.)
Notify me when updates are available (No standing order will be created).
This Bloomberg BNA report is available on standing order, which ensures you will all receive the latest edition. This report is updated annually and we will send you the latest edition once it has been published. By signing up for standing order you will never have to worry about the timeliness of the information you need. And, you may discontinue standing orders at any time by contacting us at 1.800.372.1033, option 5, or by sending us an email to email@example.com.
Put me on standing order
Notify me when new releases are available (no standing order will be created)