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Germany’s Lower House of Parliament approves equal tax breaks for civil partnerships

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  1. GulliverUK 2 Jul 2013, 1:17pm

    This is great, welcome news, particularly a dramatic change of heart – I was wondering if Merkel had one.

    Now they need to put forward a bill for FULL equality, meaning the freedom to get married. Not sure if they open up their Civil Partnerships to heterosexuals, but that too if not.

    That’s gone some way to restoring my image of Germany. You cannot have a country like Germany leading in the Europe when it’s own laws are discriminatory.

  2. michaelandfred 2 Jul 2013, 1:39pm

    While this is great news for the future, because of the way German tax law works the retroactive part is only cosmetic. Once you have paid, according to the law it has been decided. Only those who have been refusing to pay or have litigation since the civil unions came into law can get any money back. Which probably means none of us. Too bad because it would have been a huge help.

    1. GulliverUK 2 Jul 2013, 1:51pm

      Well, that’s good to know, because it sounded like they were putting things right back to 2001, but it sounds like that’s not really true. Typical politicians – all window dressing and no substance.

      Shouldn’t they all be entitled to re-submit document and have it all re-assessed, then get a rebate? Mind you, who, exactly, has documents going back to 2001? I suppose the tax authorities should have copies of them, but then you’d need all your other documentation back to 2001.

  3. Well then, that wasn’t so difficult in the end now, was it!
    Why they heck couldn’t they do that sooner? On Merkel’s side (and her party) it was pure politics: elections are coming up and this could highjack whatever they wanted debate to be about, so let’s just drop it?
    Hell no, that’s not good enough.

    I hope they move on with a legislative process towards full marriage equality (Ehe für Alle), it is way past time.

    I really don’t understand why Germany often gets high marks for being gay-friendly when the political discourse is so shamefully behind the times?

    As far as I am aware gay couples are not able to adopt children together. None of this is good enough.

    But at least they seem to be getting tax equality right. Just a shame that it sook so long.

  4. onesecond 2 Jul 2013, 9:07pm

    In Germany polls show that 79% of the population approve of equal marriage. That is way more than in the UK, France and the US.
    Even in the parliament there is a majority for that. The problem is the CDU, the C is for Christ. It made sure that its coalition partner follows them on this issue, even though the FDP has promised otherwise. The FDP is neoliberal lying scum and a lot of people hope that it wont get 5% in September so it has to stay out of parliament. The CDU is afraid that it will loose a lot of very conservative (and near dead) voters in September if the party changes the law. I think it would rather gain votes, but until they realise that, the Constituional Court will push equality ahead in every single decision that is going to come, there is no doubt about that. This tax law was forced to happen by the Constitutional Court too. It seems that a lot of people in the CDU and the society as well are content to wait for that. Sad, isn’t it?

  5. onesecond 2 Jul 2013, 9:12pm

    And calling the Bundestag Lower House is deeply disturbing to me as a German. There is no Lower and Upper House in Germany, these historic expressions derive from a time in England, when the Upper House was more powerful than the Lower House because it consisted of aristocracy. The Bundesrat is something completely different and never had ties to aristocracy and we dont have Lords in there that inherit the seats. The Bundesrat and Bundestag are only 60 years old as you surely know.

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