House Unanimously Votes to Give Tax Refunds to LGBTQ Couples

The House of Representatives voted unanimously to retroactively give same-sex couples the same tax benefits of marriage as opposite-sex couples, according to LGBTQ Nation.

Representatives Judy Chu (D-CA) and Andy Levin (D-MI) introduced the PRIDE Act, which allows same-sex couple who were married before same-sex marriage was federally recognized the same federal tax rights as opposite-sex married couples.

“This bill corrects injustices in our laws that failed to recognize the reality of legal same-sex marriage in our country,” Representative Chu said. “Legalizing same-sex marriage has meant greater equality for families across our country. It’s time our tax code reflects that.”

While people can file amended tax returns for up to three years after they originally filed, the PRIDE Act allows same-sex couples to file for the entire time they were married if they were married before 2013.

The PRIDE Act aims to be more LGBTQ-inclusive by removing gendered language like “husband” and “wife” from the U.S. tax code.

The legislation, if passed, would award $67 million in tax refunds to LGBTQ taxpayers.

“Advancing the PRIDE Act is a critical step in bringing our nation closer to fulfilling its founding promise that all are created equal,” said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. “As we celebrate this important success, House Democrats will continue to drive progress for all Americans, making clear that liberty, justice, and equality are America’s guiding principles – not bigotry or discrimination.”

A similar bill called the Refund Equality Act was introduced into the Senate by presidential hopeful Elizabeth Warren.