Tags: gay | benefits | veterans

Holder: Gay Spouses Now Eligible for Full Veterans Benefits

Wednesday, 04 Sep 2013 03:49 PM

 

  Comment  |
   Contact  |
  Print   |
    A   A  
  Copy Shortlink

The U.S. Justice Department will stop enforcing federal law barring gay spouses from sharing veterans’ benefits, clearing the way for payments to begin, according to a letter sent to congressional leaders.

Attorney General Eric Holder told lawmakers he would no longer defend a statute restricting veterans’ benefits to spouses of the opposite sex. The notices is the latest action from President Barack Obama’s administration as it implements the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in June to overturn part of the federal Defense of Marriage Act. The law denied benefits to same-sex couples legally married in states that allowed it.

Urgent: Should U.S. Strike Syria? Vote Here

“Continued enforcement would likely have a tangible adverse effect on the families of veterans and, in some circumstances, active-duty service members and reservists, with respect to survival, health care, home loan and other benefits,” Holder said in the letter to lawmakers including House Speaker John Boehner, an Ohio Republican, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, a Nevada Democrat.

The Justice Department announced in 2011 it would no longer defend the law, known as DOMA, after a determination that the law was unconstitutional. A similar standard will apply to veterans’ benefits, which are defined in statute as available to a spouse that is “a person of the opposite sex.”

Veterans Affairs Department Secretary Eric K. Shinseki, in an August letter to Senator Jeanne Shaheen, a New Hampshire Democrat, said the existing law would “not confer spousal status for purposes of eligibility for VA benefits.”

A federal judge in California last week ruled that same-sex couples must be eligible for the same veterans’ benefits as married heterosexual couples in the wake of the Supreme Court decision.

© Copyright 2014 Bloomberg News. All rights reserved.

  Comment  |
   Contact  |
  Print   |
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Country
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
 
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
Top Stories
You May Also Like

Putin: West Is Trying to Defang the Russian Bear

Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 07:59 AM

President Vladimir Putin struck an uncompromising stance over the crisis gripping Russia, accusing the U.S. and European . . .

Al Cardenas: Obama's New Cuba Policy 'Bad Day for the Good Guys'

Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 09:44 AM

Wednesday was a "bad day for the good guys" when President Barack Obama announced the U.S. would resume diplomatic relat . . .

Politicians Hit Twitter to Urge Sony to Release 'The Interview'

Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 09:44 AM

Politicians from both sides of the aisle are lighting up Twitter about Sony’s decision to cancel its controversial movie . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved