Retirement plans get guidance on same-sex marriage from the Service: They must recognize same-sex spouses of participants as of June 26, 2013, for purposes of applying the federal tax rules to qualified plans. June 26 is the date that the Supreme Court struck down a federal law that defined marriage as a union between a man and a woman. Plans that include provisions that are inconsistent with the decision, such as those that define a spouse as a person of the opposite sex, have to be amended to comply.
A special relief rule is provided for retirement plans that recognized only same-sex couples who lived in states that validated their marriage. Calendar-year plans have until Dec. 31 to adopt the required amendments. The Service says plans are free to adopt an effective date earlier than June 26, 2013, if they choose. Some fiscal-year plans will have until early 2015 to be amended.
Go to www.kiplinger.com/letterlinks/samesexamendments for the complete details.