This allowed the Obama administration to broaden those benefits through executive order, by implementing a series of new federal protections for same sex couples.
The new benefits will apply to all legally married gay couples including couples that do not live in states that recognize same sex marriage. Under the new DOJ Directive, same sex spouses will have the same rights as opposite sex couples in federal criminal trials. This includes the right not to testify against a spouse.
The directive will also extend federal death benefits and educational payments to same sex spouses of public safety officers who are killed or injured in the line of duty.
Federal prison inmates will qualify for compassionate release or reduced sentences if they need to care for incapacitated same sex spouses. And inmates’ spouses will have the same visitation rights regardless of their sex.
Also, Same sex couples will be treated equally in federal bankruptcy proceedings. And, in Utah, same sex marriages will be recognized.
Read complete article at http://www.msnbc.com/msnbc/doj-extends-gay-marriage-rights