Estate planning and the impact of the DOMA ruling

August 12, 2013 — This week on For Your Benefit, join our host, Bob Leins, as he welcomes attorney Marc Levine, a principal at Handler & Levine, LLC, to discuss estate planning and examine the impact of the Supreme Court’s June ruling on the Defense of Marriage Act for same-sex couples.

Levine examines how assets should be titled for same-sex couples, the federal benefits that you should receive as a couple after this ruling, and the changes that you should make for income tax planning.

The Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) singled-out same-sex couples for unequal treatment under federal law.

For example, even if a couple was married in a state that recognized same-sex marriage, this act allowed states that did not recognize their union, as well as the federal government, to ban them from receiving the benefits and protections allowed to all other married couples.


While not all parts of DOMA were overturned, the June ruling resulted in declaring Section 3 of the law unconstitutional. This means that federal benefits and protections will be extended to lawfully-married same-sex couples in states that recognize their marriages.

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