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She was barred from doing so by Section 3 of DOMA (codified at 1 U. The Internal Revenue Service found that the exemption did not apply to same-sex marriages, denied Windsor's claim, and compelled her to pay 3,053 in estate taxes. Perry—a case related to California's constitutional amendment initiative barring same-sex marriage.On November 9, 2010, Windsor sued the federal government in the U. District Court for the Southern District of New York, seeking a refund because DOMA singled out legally married same-sex couples for "differential treatment compared to other similarly situated couples without justification." On February 23, 2011, U. Attorney General Eric Holder announced that the Department of Justice would not defend the constitutionality of Section 3 in Windsor. Supreme Court to review the decision, and the Court issued a writ of certiorari in December 2012. The decision effectively allowed same-sex marriages in that state to resume after the court ruled that the proponents of the initiative lacked Article III standing to appeal in federal court based on its established interpretation of the case or controversy clause.On April 18, 2011, Paul Clement, representing the Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group (BLAG), intervened to defend the law. Jones ruled that Section 3 of DOMA was unconstitutional under the due process guarantees of the Fifth Amendment affirmed the district court's judgment on October 18, 2012. After Spyer's death in 2009, Windsor was required to pay 3,053 in federal estate taxes on her inheritance of her wife's estate.Had federal law recognized the validity of their marriage, Windsor would have qualified for an unlimited spousal deduction and paid no federal estate taxes.The Department of Justice did not oppose the motion.New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman filed a brief supporting Windsor's claim on July 26, 2011, arguing that DOMA Section 3 could not survive the scrutiny used for classifications based on sex and constitutes "an intrusion on the power of the state to define marriage." On June 6, 2012, Judge Barbara S.

On April 18, 2011, Paul Clement, representing the Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group of the House of Representatives (BLAG), filed a motion asking to be allowed to intervene in the suit "for the limited purpose of defending the constitutionality of Section III" of DOMA.

On February 23, 2011, Attorney General Eric Holder released a statement regarding two lawsuits challenging DOMA Section 3, Windsor and Pedersen v. He explained that the Department of Justice (DOJ) had previously defended Section 3 of DOMA in several other lawsuits in jurisdictions where precedents required the court to use the rational basis standard for reviewing laws concerning sexual orientation.

Since Windsor was filed in the jurisdiction of the Second Circuit Court of Appeals, which had no such precedent, the DOJ had identified the proper standard of review in such cases as the more demanding "heightened scrutiny".

Like the lower court, the Second Circuit held that the Spyer-Windsor marriage was valid under New York law, citing precedents on that question from several state appellate court decisions, two of which preceded Spyer's death. When New York adopted a law to permit same-sex marriage, it sought to eliminate inequality; but DOMA frustrates that objective through a system-wide enactment with no identified connection to any particular area of federal law.

On September 11, 2012, following Windsor's petition for certiorari before judgment and before the Second Circuit's ruling, the Department of Justice filed its own petition for certiorari before judgment with the Supreme Court. DOMA writes inequality into the entire United States Code.

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