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A new bill would offer retroactive tax benefits to some married same-sex couples

Congress Budget
Patrick Semansky
Sun shines on the U.S. Capitol dome in Washington, Aug. 12, 2022.

Same-sex couples could claim federal tax refunds, retroactive to when their marriages were recognized in their home state, under a bill sponsored by Maine's two U.S. senators.

The legislation would affect couples in states that legalized same-sex marriage before 2013, when the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act — a law that had denied federal recognition of same-sex marriage.

During that time, married same-sex couples missed out on federal tax deductions that straight couples were eligible for.

Maine independent Sen. Angus King said the bill would "right this wrong" by allowing same-sex couples to refile their tax returns jointly for those years and receive any benefits they missed out on.

Forty-two senators have co-sponsored the legislation so far, but Collins is the lone Republican.