Georgia income tax law does not directly provide that the same filing status be used for Georgia purposes as is used for Federal purposes, but it does provide that Federal Adjusted Gross Income be used as the starting point in computing Georgia taxable income.
The Department has traditionally required taxpayers to use the same filing status for both Georgia and Federal income tax purposes since Federal Adjusted Gross Income is computed based on a person’s Federal filing status. However, the Georgia Constitution, which limits marriage to relationships between a man and a woman, supersedes Georgia income tax law.
Therefore, persons in a same sex marriage who can now file a Federal return using married filing jointly or married filing separately status must continue to file Georgia returns using the single filing status or, if qualified, head of household filing status.
The full press release sent out late Monday from Georgia Equality:
The Georgia Department of Revenue has just issued guidance instructing same-sex couples to continue filing state income tax returns as if they were single.
According to the GA Department of Revenue, if the person is in a same-sex marriage and a married filing jointly or married filing separately status was used on a Federal return, the person must:
- For Georgia purposes, recompute Federal Adjusted Gross Income and itemized deductions (if applicable) as if the person had filed a single Federal return.
- On Georgia Form 500 use single filing status or, if qualified, head of household filing status.
- Use the single/head of household exemption amount and the single/head of household standard deduction (if applicable).
- Use single tax rates, or if qualified, head of household tax rates. This applies to all taxable years. Although amended returns may be filed for Federal tax purposes to change the filing status to married filing jointly or married filing separately, no amended returns may be filed for Georgia to change the filing status.
The informational bulletin may be viewed here: https://etax.dor.ga.gov/TaxLawandPolicy/DOMA_bulletin_10-25-2013.pdf
Georgia Equality will be planning an information session with the community before tax filing begins in 2014 for the 2013 tax year. Please stay tuned for more information.