New Campaign Takes Aim at DOMA Through Tax Protest
Are you a married same-sex couple angry about having to file your tax return separate from your partner, and at the same time be dishonest about your marital status?
Though there are certain risks, you may wish to take part in the "Refuse to Lie" campaign:
The federal government's refusal to recognize our marriages is blatant discrimination and we will not play along by lying on our tax returns and pretending we are single. The government has chosen to discriminate and we choose to expose their bigotry by refusing to lie.
Taking this principled stand is not without risk and each person doing so needs to carefully consider those risks before deciding if it is a stand you are willing to take.
While tax time forces legally married gay couples to decide whether to comply or resist the government's requirement that we lie, it is not the only circumstance where we face this dilemma. We are married and our commitment is to tell the truth every time we are asked to fill out a form or respond to a question about our marital status.
The campaign lists various tips for those planning to file as married:
One option is to put an asterisk by the single box and at the bottom of the form indicate that you are only single under DOMA. Another option is to include an attachment to your return, similar to the following:
Nina E. Olson, the national taxpayer advocate who acts as an ombudsman for the I.R.S., acknowledged the uncertainty surrounding federal taxation of same-gender spouses in an annual report to Congress. In the report, she said that taxpayers may take a filing position without penalty if there is “substantial authority” to do so, such as a court case that hasn’t been overruled by the United States Court of Appeals. And there happen to be two such cases, which are currently on appeal.