Although the Supreme Court’s Defense of Marriage Act ruling was considered a win by same-sex couples, some couples could actually lose out when it comes to benefits under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
The court on Wednesday overturned DOMA, requiring the federal government to recognize gay marriages. That ruling changes how federal benefits work, and also means big changes for PPACA.
Brian Haile, senior vice president for health care policy at Jackson Hewitt Tax Service, said in an analysis this week that same-sex couples with similar incomes could lose their eligibility for PPACA tax credits.
Related story: LGBT organizations see challenges post-DOMA
That’s because same-sex couples can now file their taxes as a married couple, combining both partners’ salaries into a single household income. At least that’s the case for those couples who live in states that have recognized same-sex marriage.
“For example, same-sex partners who each have an income of $40,000 may be eligible for the premium assistance tax credits under the ACA — but only if they remain single,” Haile wrote. “If they marry (in those states that allow same-sex marriage), then they would lose eligibility because their income would be over the threshold for a household of two.”