Virginia same-sex married couples must file separate state tax returns

Dec. 2, 2013 at 4:31 PM

RICHMOND, Va., Dec. 2 (UPI) -- Virginia will not conform to IRS rules for same-sex married couples, requiring them to file their state income tax returns as single individuals.

The Virginia Department of Taxation ruled the state will not follow federal tax treatment of same-sex married couples because state law and a state constitutional amendment prohibit recognition of gay marriage.

As a result, gay couples in Virginia, who married elsewhere, can file their federal tax returns as married couples, but must file state returns as single individuals. A bulletin from the Department of Taxation noted the decision could impact deductions, exemptions and tax credits, and create problems for businesses, the Washington Post reported Monday.

The ACLU of Virginia said the decision the state's "ongoing hostility toward lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered Virginians, including legally married same-sex couples."

ACLU executive Claire Guthrie Gastanaga said civil rights groups intend to persuade Virginia Gov.-elect Terry McAuliffe, a Democrat, to follow the lead of Gov. Jay Nixon, D-Mo., who signed an executive order allowing same-sex couples, legally married in other states, to file joint state tax returns.

Like Virginia, Missouri has a constitutional ban on same-sex marriages.

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