What Same-Sex Couples Should Know About the Tax Code

The rules may be different for states that do and don't recognize gay marriage.

— -- Filing joint taxes isn’t just for traditional married couples anymore.

"Same-sex couples are treated as married couples for tax purposes, so if you have a marriage that's recognized under state law as a same-sex marriage, then you'll file your return in the same way that an opposite-sex couple will file,” IRS spokesman Eric Smith says.

Couples may also want to consider reviewing past returns from when their marriage wasn't legal, according to Kathy Pickering, executive director of The Tax Institute at H&R Block.

"For those states that now recognize it, couples should consider going back and amending past returns to see if there may be some additional money that they'd be eligible to claim,” Pickering says.

What types of claims? "Things like dependent care. Child tax credits and things like that,” Pickering advises.