DOMA Implications for Employee Benefit Plans
18 Pages Posted: 31 May 2014
Date Written: September 30, 2013
The U.S. Supreme Court recently held section 3 of DOMA to be unconstitutional in United States v. Windsor. However, in disposing of Hollingsworth v. Perry, the Court left section 2 of DOMA intact. Windsor has significant rippling effects because there are 1,138 instances of the use of the terms "marriage" and "spouse" in federal laws relying on DOMA section 3. Employee benefit plans will be affected significantly because there are benefits and rights extended to a participant's spouse and dependents under ERISA and the Internal Revenue Code. This article highlights those changes and raises the outstanding issues.
Keywords: ERISA, DOMA, Windsor
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