Well, shoot, it looks like we have to get unionized...Questions about Connecticut... - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 6 Old 07-11-2010, 12:01 AM - Thread Starter
 
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This is a mix of rant and questions...apologies in advance...

dw and I have been together for twelve years. Eight years ago we were married in our church (not legally of course...this was before any states were legalizing), in front of 125 of our family members and friends. A few years ago we moved to MA. We thought we might legally marry, since we can in MA, but we have put it off largely because (1) it isn't federally recognized; (2) it complicates our tax situation immensly; and (3) the religious marriage was the most important one in our minds. Every-once-in-a-while I start feeling like we should go ahead and get married in MA because it would secure our property as jointly owned and would hopefully provide an additional level of security in the event that one of us dies unexpectedly.

Right now, though, I am feeling glad we haven't married in MA because I would really resent what I am going to have to do in CT if I was already married in MA . Because the thing is, I have been accepted on a deferment basis and am going to do a grad program at Yale fall of 2011.

So I was checking out the Yale Student Health Plan, and it will only cover dw if we are married or in a civil union. I don't think a MA marriage would count, from the looks of it. So even if we *were* married in MA (which we might want to do still because we might keep our property here), we'd have to go and get a CT civil union for me to get her on my plan .

Anyway, can someone give me the scoop on CT civil unions (or dw just told me she thought it was actually a marriage). What do we have to do?

Also, does anyone have info on state-only recognized marriages and federal taxes? dw is currently my legal financial dependent as the sahm, but this is because we are unmarried. I admit in a way I get the gratifying feeling each tax season that I am giving the federal govt. the finger for not recognizing our marriage. If we got married in MA, could I still claim dw as a dependent on federal taxes given that it is not a federally-recognized marriage? Or would it be one of those situations in which the government is like, "We won't recognize your marriage unless it saves us some money, and in that case, you are violating the law unless you comply with us recognizing your marriage."

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#2 of 6 Old 07-11-2010, 01:57 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Okay, I guess it is marriage: http://www.glad.org/uploads/docs/pub...ivil-union.pdf

So would a MA marriage be recognized in CT?

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#3 of 6 Old 07-11-2010, 02:05 PM
 
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Congrats on the grad school plan! Very exciting!

I can't speak to CT, but I can say that we are married in MA, file jointly for the state and individually federal. We file H as head of household with me as her dependent because I have been in grad school and not (paid) working for the past four years. It hasn't hurt us yet! I'm not sure what will happen with the new changes based on that court ruling the other day. It might be worth waiting until you're closer to moving/starting school if it won't be til 2011. Who knows what will be the case then!

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#4 of 6 Old 07-11-2010, 02:34 PM
 
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Only pretty sure about these thoughts, not certain:

I think your MA marriage would apply in CT. I'd just call Yale and ask. Often paperwork takes a while to catch up. But, since they have same-sex marriage, I'm virtually certain they recognize such marriages from other states.

With this week's court ruling, you are supposed to be able to file federal taxes as married. That is, of course, pending an appeal that could overturn the decision (or at least put a stay on it). So, you may not be able to file as single with the fed gov't if you are married in either state.

I'd tend to agree with Osker, that you should wait a bit until it's closer to 2011. And, congrats on grad school!!!! That is awesome!

Mommy to an amazing 8 year old, wife to an inspiring principal, and welcoming Wylie Grace! Our July 4th babe!
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#5 of 6 Old 07-11-2010, 05:44 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks to both of you for the info and the congrats! And man, I must be mentally on vacation/out of the loop for the summer or something...not sure how I missed the court ruling you both referenced. Now I have to look into that.

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#6 of 6 Old 07-13-2010, 12:50 PM
 
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I don't know Yale's policy specifically, but I am familiar with the system at similar schools and I would be very surprised if they required a CT marriage. The point of allowing queer students access to benefits is to provide some measure of equality, and unless they only allowed straight couples who were married in CT to access benefits, it seems unlikely they would require a CT marriage for queer couples. Generally schools that recognize queer spouses accept whatever sort of legally recognized union is available in your home location. The exception might be students who are coming from places where there is no gay marriage or partnership, who might then be asked to get a CT marriage.

I would follow up with the school and if you have any problems go to the university omsbudsperson.

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