Married same sex couples and bankruptcy

The Defense of Marriage (DOMA) previously made married same sex couples ineligible to file a joint bankruptcy petition. With the Obama administration’s new position that they will not defend DOMA, things seems to be changing.

Today, in California, 20 judges signed onto an opinion, In re Balas (Bankr. C.D. Cal., June 13, 2011). The case denied the United States Trustee’s motion to dismiss the bankruptcy case of a same sex couple, married in California, based on DOMA. This case agrees with In re Somers (Bankr. S.D.NY. 2011) and In re Ziviello-Howell (Bankr. E.D. Cal., May 31, 2011) in allowing married, same sex couples to file a joint bankruptcy.

Anyone reading this want to be a test case? I find that typically, it is a benefit to a same sex couple to file as unmarried for means test purposes.

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