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Tool | February 2014

Guide to State Tax-Filing Status for Same-Sex Couples

SEE ALSO: Kiplinger Tax Map|Retiree Tax Map

Filing a state tax return can be tricky for same-sex couples. Those who were married in any jurisdiction that permits such unions must now file their federal returns as married, even if they live in a state that doesn't recognize their marriage. But the rules for state tax filings still follow the law of the state where they reside.

Those living in states that OK their marriage will file state returns as married. The same goes for married same-sex couples living in Colorado, Missouri and Oregon, even though those three locales currently prohibit same-sex marriage in their states. Utah — which also doesn't permit same-sex marriage — allows couples to choose whether to file as married or single.

Legally married same-sex couples in other states, who will have to file as single, should plan on spending extra time on their tax returns. Since states typically base tax returns on federal tax returns, these couples may have to create "dummy" federal tax returns as single filers before they can complete their state tax returns.

See the map below to determine which states require married same-sex couples to file as married and which states still mandate single returns.

Same-Sex Tax Map for Legally Married Couples

New Jersey Rhode Island Delaware Washington, DC Maine New Hampshire Vermont Massachusetts Rhode Island Connecticut New York New York New Jersey Pennsylvania Delaware Washington, DC Indiana Maryland West Virginia Hawaii Alaska Virginia North Carolina South Carolina Georgia Ohio Michigan Michigan Kentucky Tennessee Florida Alabama Mississippi Illinois Wisconsin Louisiana Arkansas Missouri Iowa Oklahoma Kansas Texas Nebraska Minnesota New Mexico Colorado South Dakota North Dakota Arizona Utah Wyoming Montana Idaho Nevada California Oregon Washington

*Note: New Hampshire and Tennessee tax dividends and interest.