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Old 02-23-2011, 02:49 PM   #1
TagsMissy
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Anti-gay marriage law defence dropped by U.S.

I know it's just step but I hope the step leads to leaps and bounds...

http://www.cbc.ca/news/world/story/2...rriage-us.html
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Old 02-23-2011, 05:11 PM   #2
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WooHoo!
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Old 02-23-2011, 05:13 PM   #3
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It's a step in the right direction!
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Old 02-23-2011, 06:32 PM   #4
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I hope good comes from this!
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Old 02-24-2011, 03:27 AM   #5
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Finally some common sense with DOMA

It's a good start. Let's hope he follows through...
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Old 02-24-2011, 10:16 AM   #6
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I saw this this morning

http://www.cnn.com/2011/US/02/24/haw...Top+Stories%29
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Old 02-24-2011, 10:26 AM   #7
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Just finished my taxes and once again tortured myself by looking at the difference if we were able to file a joint return.

So here's hoping that some day we can file a joint federal return. And that someday we don't have to figure out how much she can make without it hurting us tax wise. I claim her as a dependent and if she works during the year she never makes more than the allowed amount before I can't claim her becuase it just isn't worth it for us.

And it would be nice if she could be on my HCRA and we didn't have to include her part of the insurance in my taxable income etc, etc, etc. Okay that's my annual vent on this.
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Old 02-25-2011, 10:20 AM   #8
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I agree, Missy, small steps were the beginning of equal marriage in Canada. Many people thought that the small steps would be reversed, but, it got things rolling and attempts to counter them simply became recognized for the discrimination that they were.

I think it's very brave for Obama (and all of the others involved in the decision) to publicly acknowledge that discriminatory laws are unconstitutional. I've wondered for a long time how long it would take to get to that legal stage. It doesn't matter that lots of people will protest and argue in favour of discrimination. Once it has been acknowledged as unconstitutional the process is headed the right direction.

On a side note: the issue of filing joint tax returns and savings/cost of not being allowed to marry seem to come up all the time in these discussions. Missy, is this different in Canadian taxes? We combine our charitable receipts onto the higher income taxes and we'll claim our uninsured medical expenses on the lower income taxes and we'll make choices about where to claim our child based on what gets the best return. But, none of those things are dependent upon us being married -- only on cohabiting for at least a year. We have never filed jointly, I don't even remember a way to do so. Should I go read things again before I do this year's?
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Old 02-25-2011, 10:40 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hematite153 View Post
On a side note: the issue of filing joint tax returns and savings/cost of not being allowed to marry seem to come up all the time in these discussions. Missy, is this different in Canadian taxes? We combine our charitable receipts onto the higher income taxes and we'll claim our uninsured medical expenses on the lower income taxes and we'll make choices about where to claim our child based on what gets the best return. But, none of those things are dependent upon us being married -- only on cohabiting for at least a year. We have never filed jointly, I don't even remember a way to do so. Should I go read things again before I do this year's?
For US taxes and in our case it has to do with child credits. If we were Married Filing a joint return then there would be a higher phase-out and we could get the same credit as a "married per IRS rules" couple. The other piece has to do with I can claim my DP as a dependent as long as she earns x or less. If she makes more than that I can't claim her and it ends up costing us money unless she makes above y. And that has to do with having back into taxable income her share of the insurance paid by my employer. If I claim her as a dependent I don't have to add it back.
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Old 02-25-2011, 11:01 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hematite153 View Post
On a side note: the issue of filing joint tax returns and savings/cost of not being allowed to marry seem to come up all the time in these discussions. Missy, is this different in Canadian taxes? We combine our charitable receipts onto the higher income taxes and we'll claim our uninsured medical expenses on the lower income taxes and we'll make choices about where to claim our child based on what gets the best return. But, none of those things are dependent upon us being married -- only on cohabiting for at least a year. We have never filed jointly, I don't even remember a way to do so. Should I go read things again before I do this year's?
I am going to assume filing as couple is filing as a couple irrelevant to gender in Canada. Hubby and I are a hetero couple so I have never had to look at/deal with taxes as a same sex couple so I don't know what has or has not changed in that respect. Neither hubby or I claim the other a dependent as we each make too much money ((according to the Canadian Gov't.... try living in Vancouver we wonder where our money goes lol)), the only stuff we claim that pertains to each other is we need to show the salary from our T4 of each on our claim and our joint investments (GICs/Joint account). Otherwise most of our tax claims are personal stuff since we came in with our own finances and investments and we've just kept it that way.

We have no kids and no major medical expenses to worry about so both of our tax claims are fairly simple.

Tax laws change somewhat annually you may want to look into it. As for charitable receipts I believe they need to go to the name of the person on the receipt; if it's jointly you share it or I believe can choose who benefits more. It's not necessarily the one who makes more will benefit more -- you need to look at RSP purchases as well; I do my best to try and almost max out each year if possible. However one needs to be careful to not put all funds into RSPs if possible, GICs or Tax Savings account are good routes in case you need to pull money out.

I suggest finding a good financial adviser at your bank as the service is free as long as you bank there and they can help you spread your funds wisely.
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Old 02-25-2011, 03:29 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TagsMissy View Post
I am going to assume filing as couple is filing as a couple irrelevant to gender in Canada. Hubby and I are a hetero couple so I have never had to look at/deal with taxes as a same sex couple so I don't know what has or has not changed in that respect. Neither hubby or I claim the other a dependent as we each make too much money ((according to the Canadian Gov't.... try living in Vancouver we wonder where our money goes lol)), the only stuff we claim that pertains to each other is we need to show the salary from our T4 of each on our claim and our joint investments (GICs/Joint account).
My question was more, is there an option to file a joint return? I've never come across it.

The legal definition of spouse (in Canada) is someone (yes, gender neutral) that you have cohabited with for 1 year or longer. In fact you can be sued for spousal support if one person supported the other for that year even if you didn't have any form of non-platonic relationship.

As for claiming as a dependent, a non-disabled adult needs to earn VERY little to qualify for that in Canada. Even when I was a full-time student I didn't qualify. I could transfer my education credits to my DW, but, it was worth more (long term) to hold onto them and use them myself when I was making money.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TagsMissy View Post
Tax laws change somewhat annually you may want to look into it.
Believe me, I read the whole book every year...I'm weird that way.

I know that when I lived in the US people used to talk about "marriage incentives" but I never really understood what they were talking about. My guess is that this is what C&GsMama is talking about. But, I don't think we have equivalents in Canada other than being able to make donations to a spouses RRSP and claim that on your own taxes...but, again you only need to legally qualify as spouses and marriage is irrelevant.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TagsMissy View Post
As for charitable receipts I believe they need to go to the name of the person on the receipt; if it's jointly you share it or I believe can choose who benefits more.
Actually, I know this one well. The line is very clear that either spouse can claim a receipt in either spouses' name. This is true for both charitable receipts and uncovered medical costs.

It's set up to encourage a higher degree of charitable donations because you get a lesser credit for the first $200 annually than for donations above that. So, allowing both names means that those who donate a lot get the larger benefit for most of their donations.
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Old 02-25-2011, 05:56 PM   #12
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hematite153 if you knew the answers why were you asking me??

As for US income tax, it seems they can claim a lot of stuff we don't claim up north. *shrugs* I've never bothered to look into the US tax system as I am not American nor do I live in the US
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Old 02-25-2011, 09:12 PM   #13
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hematite153 if you knew the answers why were you asking me??
I was asking because I was confused since it comes up so often in these discussions yet seems so irrelevant to me.

Btw, I read the book today and noted that at some point in the last 7 years they've changed the definitions on the form and "spouse" means legally married whereas "common-law" refers to having co-habited for 12 months. However, anywhere that you can claim your "spouse" you can claim your "common-law partner".

I believe that the legal definition of spouse in Canada hasn't changed and that this is likely just a method of data collection, but, I don't know. There's also a note that in 2011 the automaticity of becoming "common-law" will disappear and you will have to choose to identify that way. I would guess that this is one of those slower changes that's come out of equal marriage. They no longer have to force couples to become legally recognized as couples in order to have an out for denying marriage to some.
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Old 03-08-2011, 05:45 PM   #14
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I really liked this on facebook and since I don't have a profile or do anything other than lurk on facebook I thought I'd post it here. I apologize if everyone has seen this a bunch of times:

So, let me get this straight...Charlie Sheen can make a "porn family", Kelsey Grammer can end a 15 year marriage over the phone, Larry King can be on divorce #9, Britney Spears had a 55 hour marriage, Jesse James and Tiger Woods, while married, were having sex with EVERYONE. Yet, the idea of same-sex marriage is going to destroy the institution of marriage? Really? Re-post if you are proud to support equal rights...
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Old 03-10-2011, 07:35 PM   #15
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better a step then a fumble!!
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