Australian Woman Told To Pay $5,000 For Marrying Wife Before Marriage Equality Passed

by Ryan Lynch

South Florida Gay News

Sunday December 31, 2017

A woman in Tasmania, Australia got retroactively billed for $5,000 in taxes after the country did not recognize her marriage.

The woman, who was not identified, was married outside Australia in 2016 before marriage equality was passed in Australia, according to LGBTQ Nation. The woman applied for the Family Tax Benefit, a refundable tax credit for low income families who have kids.

The woman did not declare her wife's income on her taxes because her spouse does not live in the country and they do not share finances.

She later called the office to declare her marriage because those who don't announce family change while on the FTB get penalized, according to LGBTQ Nation. She received an invoice for $6,600 Australian Dollars ($5,000 US) and a letter she would no longer receive the FTB.

"This woman has done nothing wrong and is being penalized because of the failure of the Federal Government to recognize her marriage when it occurred," Spokesperson for Tasmanians United for Marriage Equality Rodney Croome said.

The woman will not receive the FTB. She also will not be able to claim marriage benefits for last year or this year because her marriage was not officially recognized.

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