As dreaded tax day is fast approaching, we LGBT people have frequently sought ways to protest via the IRS. Some people have simply refused to pay taxes as we do not have equal protection under the laws. The Refuse to Lie campaign is shedding light on another way we can protest our unequal status with the Federal Government.
From the Refuse to Lie website:
Each year the federal government demands that thousands of married couples lie.
The federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) not only denies legally married gay couples the benefits of heterosexual marriage, but we are also told to disavow our spouses and file our taxes as “single.”
The Federal Government must stop requiring legally married gay couples to deny the existence of our families and hide our marriages.
It is dehumanizing and it is wrong.
Across the country, legally married gay couples are taking a stand. We are refusing to lie about the fact that we are married.
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.
This website is intended to be a resource to all who decide to refuse to lie. And it is a place for everyone who believes in marriage equality to show your support and stand with us by adding your name to this effort.
Not everyone will commit to filing as married but everyone can take a stand in solidarity.
Please sign the petiton and help send the message to the federal government that gay married couples should not be compelled to lie. Share this link of Facebook and help spread the word.
Of course this is not for everyone and you are certainly risking something, but the protest and the reasons behind it are completely legitimate. The very idea that we have to lie on our tax returns if we are legally married, is ludicrous. The site gives detailed information on how to go about taking part in the action, with options on how to do so safely and within the rules of filing.
How can you affirm your marital status, object to DOMA, file a joint return, and not be subject to penalties? Here are two possibilities:
- File two single returns (including the attachment affirming the marriage) and then file an amended return, filing jointly. The amended return is a 1040X. This is what the plaintiffs in the GLAD case did. Once the IRS rejects the amended return, or if six months passes and they do nothing, the taxpayers who file an amended return have the right to file suit in federal district court claiming the refund.The basis of the claim for refund by a Florida same-sex couple would be that they were married, that under the U.S. Constitution that marriage should be recognized, that it would be perjury to claim otherwise, and that DOMA itself is unconstitutional. This option would avoid penalties because your original return would be filed according to the statute.
- Submit two returns to the IRS, one filed jointly, showing the tax due on a joint return, and one filed as a single taxpayer, showing the tax due on a single return. Explain your constitutional and moral theory entitling you to file a joint return. Pay whatever amount is due on the single return and ask the IRS to choose which return to accept.If you have paid the amount due on the basis of a single return, then you have not made an underpayment as a result of disregarding a statute. Penalties are only due if there is an underpayment. If the IRS accepts your single return and accepts your tax payment on that basis, there is no penalty. Of course if the IRS accepts your joint return and that results in a refund to you, there is no way to know what will happen if you are later audited. That would be a new case.
In many cases, of course, you will actually pay a higher tax if you file jointly. In that case, you should not owe a penalty.
Please check out the site, share your story and support this incredible action.