PENNSYLVANIA: Lesbian Widow Sues State For Equal Tax Treatment
In yet another marriage lawsuit in the Keystone State, a lesbian widow is following the lead of Edith Windsor.
A Bethlehem woman who legally married her same-sex partner in 2011 in Connecticut is suing to seek equal tax treatment in the wake of her partner's death last year. Barbara Baus and Cathy Burgi-Rios, who lived together for more than 15 years, married on April 29, 2011, in Fairfield County, Connecticut. Burgi-Rios died on Sept. 21, 2012, from leukemia. She was 55. According to a news release issued this morning by the law firm representing Baus, she sought the spousal tax rate of 0 percent from Pennsylvania for what she inherited from Burgi-Rios. The state Department of Revenue responded to her request by stating her marriage was not valid in Pennsylvania; the department said she would instead be required to pay a 15 percent rate that applies to legal strangers, according to the news release from the law firm Jerner & Palmer, P.C.RELATED: Already in progress in Pennsylvania are the ACLU's lawsuit against Gov. Tom Corbett and the lawsuit filed by Montgomery County Clerk Bruce Hanes.