marriage penalty

"I ... do? Wait, let me think about it."

Dec 16, 2013

Experts help homo and hetero couples weigh the pros and cons of getting married by year-end. Just because it's now legal for same-sex couples to marry in California and many other states, and the federal government must recognize those marriages, should you? There are financial advantages for some to get hitched by Dec. 31, but disadvantages for others, and there are many other potential risks and benefits.

Inequality hits LGBT people right in the assets. Remember all the hype about the “marriage penalty”?  actually, most of the penalties come if you canNOT marry. Legal inequities allow or even require discrimination in taxes, pensions, health care, real estate and much more. Financial advisor Mark Grace and estate planning attorney Susan von Herrmann fill us in on the extra steps queer people must take to protect themselves and their families financially. They also give practical tips for anyone – including straight folks – in a relationship not recognized by the U.S. government.