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Israel Moves Toward Tax Equality for Same-Sex Parents

Israel Moves Toward Tax Equality for Same-Sex Parents


A compromise was finally reached after weeks of negotiations, but it may be subject to further changes.

Same-sex couples raising children in Israel are on the road to receiving the same tax breaks as their straight counterparts.

Under current Israeli law, women who are parents get a greater tax break than men, so male couples are at a disadvantage. A bill passed in a preliminary reading Wednesday by the Knesset, Israel's parliament, equalizes the tax situation but falls short of fully recognizing the relationships of same-sex couples, reports The Jerusalem Post.

Two of the nation's leading political parties, Yesh Atid and Habayit Hayehudi, reached a compromise on the legislation Tuesday night after weeks of deliberation and legislative infighting. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu supports the measure, which is subject to further negotiation and possibly alteration before its final passage.

Israeli newspaper Haaretz offers this analysis of the legislation:

Yesh Atid can say gay parents have been included the tax law, and in addition claim a moral triumph with the passing of the bill on Wednesday that for the first time recognizes same-sex couples, even if this step does not result in legislation in the end.

A senior party member said Tuesday that "Habayit Hayehudi cannot threaten to veto a law after the government has decided to support it. We broke that principle through this compromise. The bill will be voted on exactly the way the government approved it, and Habayit Hayehudi won't prevent that."

In parallel, Habayit Hayehudi should be able to boast of derailing legislation that recognizes same-sex couples.

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