Same-Sex Marriage

Same-sex marriage refers to marriage between two individuals of the same sex. Historically, such marriages have not been legally recognized. However, there has been a growing trend to expand marriage rights to... more +
Same-sex marriage refers to marriage between two individuals of the same sex. Historically, such marriages have not been legally recognized. However, there has been a growing trend to expand marriage rights to same-sex couples. The United States Supreme Court addressed aspects of this issue in Windsor v. United States and Hollingsworth v. Perry.  less -
News & Analysis as of

Religious Institutions Update: February 2017

Timely Topics - A draft executive order of President Donald Trump relating to religious freedom proposes several material changes to federal law. First, it would require the executive branches to recognize a broad scope...more

Is discrimination in respect of same-sex marriage ever permissible?

In Reverend Canon Pemberton v. Former Acting Bishop of Southwell and Nottingham, Canon Pemberton, a Church of England priest, entered into a same-sex marriage. The Church of England opposed the Marriage (Same Sex...more

Employee Benefits Developments - January 2017

The Employee Benefits practice group is pleased to present the Benefits Developments Newsletter for the month of January, 2017. Click through the links below for more information on each specific development or case. IRS...more

Retired Teacher Awarded Post-Retirement Benefits For Same-Sex Spouse

In Re: Souderton Area Education Association and Souderton Area School District, Arbitration Award of August 7, 2016 (Arbitrator Joan Parker). Under Pennsylvania law a teacher was not able to legally marry her same-sex spouse...more

Married, but Without Benefits: The Obergefell Saga Continues in Texas

Same-sex couples can legally marry, but are they legally entitled to benefits? The Supreme Court of Texas will decide this issue after hearing oral arguments in March of 2017 in Pidgeon v. Turner. ...more

IRS Allows Same-Sex Spouses to Recover Certain Transfer Tax Exemptions

The Internal Revenue Service recently released IRS Notice 2017-15 to provide special procedures for spouses in a same-sex marriage, or the executor of a same-sex spouse, to recalculate their gift and estate tax applicable...more

Same-Sex Spouses Authorized to Recalculate Transfer Tax Treatment of Prior Gifts and Bequests

The IRS recently issued Notice 2017-15 to provide same-sex spouses relief to recalculate the federal estate, gift and generation-skipping transfer (GST) tax treatment of gifts and bequests made before the Defense of Marriage...more

Courts Have Authority To Dissolve Civil Unions Under Pennsylvania Divorce Code

Prior to the December, 2016 Neyman vs. Buckley decision, couples who were joined in civil unions had difficulty dissolving their union in Pennsylvania. When Neyman filed a divorce complaint to dissolve her civil union in...more

Michigan Abolishes Dower Rights Pending Governor Signature

The Michigan Legislature addressed lack of clarity in dower rights caused by the United States Supreme Court’s recognition of same sex marriage by eliminating it altogether. Generally speaking, dower rights allow a widow...more

What Employers Can Expect from the New Administration – Part 2: Immigration, the Affordable Care Act & Social Issues

In our second in a three-part series on what to expect from the Trump administration, we discuss immigration policy and the Affordable Care Act (ACA), as well as what may be in store for parental leave, marriage equality and...more

The Election is Over, Now What?

Now that the election is over, many clients and friends are asking what labor and employment law might look like under the soon to be President Trump. Of course, no one can predict exactly what will happen in the coming term....more

Employee Benefits Developments - October 2016

The Employee Benefits practice group is pleased to present the Benefits Developments Newsletter for the month of October, 2016. 2017 Benefits Limits Announced - The Internal Revenue Service and Social Security...more

Religious Institutions Update: October 2016

Timely Topics - The final rule implementing Section 1557 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) was issued by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office for Civil Rights (OCR) on May...more

Mon General Hospital to Settle Discrimination Charge Filed By Female Employee Denied Benefits For Same-Sex Spouse

Employee Benefits No Longer Exclude Coverage for Same-Sex Spouses - MORGANTOWN, W.V. -- Mon General Hospital has agreed to conciliate a charge of sex discrimination filed by its employee, Kathy McIntire, alleging that...more

IRS Regulations Clarify Definition of Spouse for Federal Tax Purposes in Light of Obergefell v. Hodges

The IRS has issued final regulations clarifying the definitions of “spouse,” “husband,” “wife,” and “husband and wife” for federal tax purposes. The final regulations now define “spouse,” “husband” and “wife” as any...more

Exploring LGBT Discrimination in the Workplace

The effects of same-sex marriage on employee benefits, companies’ actions to prevent employee discrimination and an evolving focus on benefits with special implications for diverse employees continue to be hot topics in...more

Wealth Management Update - October 2016

October Interest Rates for GRATs, Sales to Defective Grantor Trusts, Intra-Family Loans and Split Interest Charitable Trusts - The October Section 7520 rate for use with estate planning techniques such as CRTs, CLTs,...more

Final IRS Regulations Clarify Tax Rules for Same-Sex Couples

Effective September 2, 2016, the Internal Revenue Service formally put into place amendments to regulations that define who is married for tax purposes. The new regulations finalize proposed regulations issued in 2015, with...more

The Internal Revenue Service Issues Final Rules Defining Marriage

The Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) has recognized that marriages of couples of the same sex should be treated the same as marriages of couples of the opposite sex for federal tax purposes. On September 2, 2016, the IRS...more

Regulations Issued to Make Marriage References Gender Neutral

Further to the recent U.S. Supreme Court cases recognizing same-sex marriages, the IRS has issued final regulations that codify same-sex marriages for federal tax purposes, regardless of gender. Under Treasury Regulations §...more

Recognition of Same-Sex Marriage Officially the Tax Law of the Land

Effective tomorrow, September 2, 2016, new IRS final regulations will take effect which provide that for federal tax purposes, the terms “spouse,” “husband,” and “wife” mean an individual lawfully married to another...more

Wealth Management Update - September 2016

September Interest Rates for GRATs, Sales to Defective Grantor Trusts, Intra-Family Loans and Split Interest Charitable Trusts - The September § 7520 rate for use with estate planning techniques such as CRTs, CLTs, QPRTs...more

Bringing Families Together with a Same-Sex Visa

The United States Supreme Court has now granted same-sex unions the same rights that traditional marriages experience. This also means that green cards are now available for immigrant spouses of the same sex. The law now...more

Wealth Management Update - July 2016

July Interest Rates for GRATs, Sales to Defective Grantor Trusts, Intra-Family Loans and Split Interest Charitable Trusts - The July § 7520 rate for use with estate planning techniques such as CRTs, CLTs, QPRTs and...more

SCOVA Watch: Three Takeaways From the Court’s Recent Ruling on Same-Sex Cohabitation

Last December, I previewed the case of Luttrell v. Cucco, which had, at that time, just been taken up by the Supreme Court of Virginia. There are a few notable lessons from the Court’s ruling that are useful reminders...more

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