The following is a guest blog post by Frederick Hertz, an attorney and mediator based in Oakland, CA, and the author of the ABA treatise Counseling Unmarried Couples: A Guide to Effective Representation.
One of the worst forms of discrimination against same-sex couples is discrimination in the form of legal complexity. The twists and turns of same-sex partnership law over the past ten years—both in California and federally—have resulted in a morass of legal uncertainty, and the litigation flowing from these complications is just now beginning to hit the appellate courts.
Updated: The Supreme Court heard oral argument in Windsor v U.S. on March 27, 2013, with negative implications for domestic partners, as discussed in the April 2013 issue of CEB’s Estate Planning & California Probate Reporter.
The U. S. Supreme Court’s grant of review in Windsor v U.S. puts the marital deduction in doubt for same-sex surviving spouses but it doesn’t change the advice: for now, practitioners should keep filing estate tax returns claiming the marital deduction until someone tells them to stop.