"The New York State Bar Association applauds the decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit in Boston, which, if upheld, would grant the same federal rights to legally married same-sex couples as granted to heterosexual married couples.
"The State Bar long has called on Congress to repeal DOMA, because it singles out a class of citizens for discrimination. Today's decision by the First Circuit Court of Appeals is an emphatic reminder that the denial of federal rights is discriminatory and unconstitutional.
"As a result of DOMA, New York's same-sex married couples cannot file joint federal income tax returns, obtain insurance benefits as federal government employees, transfer an estate to a spouse without tax consequences or receive spousal Social Security benefits. These provisions were struck down today by the court.
"Today's decision is unlikely to be the final word on the matter, because it is expected to be appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court.
"The State Bar Association pushed for the legalization of same-sex marriage in New York and will continue to push Congress to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act."
The 77-000 member New York State Bar Association is the largest voluntary bar association in the nation. It was founded in 1876.
Contact: Mark Mahoney
Associate Director, Media Services and Public Affairs