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Jones ruled that a rational basis review of Section 3 of DOMA showed it to be unconstitutional, as it violated plaintiff's rights under the equal protection guarantees of the Fifth Amendment, and ordered that Windsor receive the tax refund due to her.Where BLAG had argued that the Spyer-Windsor marriage was not recognized by New York law at the time of Spyer's death – a prerequisite for Windsor's claim against the IRS – Jones cited the "informal opinion letters" of the state's governor, attorney general, and comptroller to the contrary along with several opinions in New York appellate courts.In May 2008, New York Governor David Paterson had ordered state agencies to recognize same-sex marriages performed in other jurisdictions.Some lower-level state courts had made similar rulings, but whether the state's highest court would give such a ruling the force of law, as Windsor's claim for a refund required, remained uncertain Windsor at first asked several gay rights advocacy groups to represent her, but none would take the case.The Department of Justice did not oppose the motion.New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman filed a brief supporting Windsor's claim on July 26, 2011, arguing that DOMA Section 3 could not survive the scrutiny used for classifications based on sex and constitutes "an intrusion on the power of the state to define marriage." On June 6, 2012, Judge Barbara S.On April 18, 2011, Paul Clement, representing the Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group (BLAG), intervened to defend the law. Jones ruled that Section 3 of DOMA was unconstitutional under the due process guarantees of the Fifth Amendment affirmed the district court's judgment on October 18, 2012. After Spyer's death in 2009, Windsor was required to pay 3,053 in federal estate taxes on her inheritance of her wife's estate.Had federal law recognized the validity of their marriage, Windsor would have qualified for an unlimited spousal deduction and paid no federal estate taxes.
Kaplan had unsuccessfully represented the plaintiffs in a 2006 case that challenged the inability of same-sex couples to marry under New York law, Hernández v. Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison, in conjunction with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), filed the case in the U. District Court for the Southern District of New York on behalf of Windsor as executor of Spyer's estate on November 9, 2010.
On December 7, the Supreme Court granted certiorari in the case, now United States v. In addition to the question presented by the DOJ – "Whether Section 3 of DOMA violates the Fifth Amendment's guarantee of equal protection" for same sex partners – the court also asked the parties to brief and argue two other questions: whether the government's agreement with the Second Circuit's decision deprived the court of a "real dispute" and therefore of jurisdiction to hear the case, and whether BLAG had standing in its own right, i.e., the legal right to independently ask for the appeal to be heard in the event that the government was not a valid petitioner. The particular case at hand concerns the estate tax, but DOMA is more than a simple determination of what should or should not be allowed as an estate tax refund.
Article III of the Constitution (the "Case or Controversy clause") forbids parties that do not themselves have a real and personal ("particularized") complaint from filing a case or appeal in a federal court. Among the over 1,000 statutes and numerous federal regulations that DOMA controls are laws pertaining to Social Security, housing, taxes, criminal sanctions, copyright, and veterans' benefits.
Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act, which federally defined marriage as a union between one man and one woman as husband and wife, is unconstitutional under the Fifth Amendment Due Process Clause's guarantee of equal protection.
The federal government must recognize same-sex marriages that have been approved by the states. in which the United States Supreme Court held that restricting U. federal interpretation of "marriage" and "spouse" to apply only to opposite-sex unions, by Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), is unconstitutional under the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment.