Local Same-Sex Couple Awaits Supreme Court Decision
3/31/2013 (Updated 10:49:25 PM)(Source: Samantha McDonald)
BINGHAMTON -- Binghamton residents Lauren and Jessica have been married for two years.
"It's no different than why anyone else gets married," said Lauren Hering.
Although their same-sex marriage is legal in New York state, it is not federally recognized, barring them from over 1000 federal benefits regarding taxes, family, and medical care.
"For financial reasons, this is huge," said Hering.
Unlike heterosexual couples, if a gay partner dies, the other would not receive social security survivor benefits and would have to pay federal taxes on any inheritance.
"These are human rights, they shouldn't have to be voted on," said Jessica Arnold.
And aside from material benefits the couple say federal legalization of gay marriage would affect them emotionally.
"To have that equality gives you a sense of wholeness and completion," said Hering.
Lauren and Jessica say they have been overwhelmed with support, both from friends and strangers.
"It made you really see how many allies the gay community has," said Hering.
The Supreme Court could make a decision on marriage equality by the end of June.
****Samantha McDonald, Fox 40 HD News****
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