Virginia breaks with IRS on same-sex marriage

Virginia has decided not to follow the federal government's lead for how to treat same-sex married couples for tax purposes.

The Treasury Department announced in August that it would allow those couples to file married returns, even if they live in states that don't recognize same-sex marriage. 

But Virginia's tax department said – after consulting with the state's attorney general, Ken Cuccinelli – that same-sex married partners will have to file single returns in the state, The Washington Post reports.

Virginia has a detailed constitutional ban on same-sex marriage, and it could be tricky for the incoming Democratic governor, Terry McAuliffe, to allow same-sex couples to file married returns. 

Treasury officials said in August that an across-the-board rule would be the easiest to enforce, and that same-sex partners would be able to move around the country without having to worry about their filing status.