Ruling on Same-Sex Marriage Will Affect Student Aid for Such Couples

Ruling on Same-Sex Marriage Will Affect Student-Aid Benefits 1

Gay-rights activists gathered in front of the U.S. Supreme Court building on Wednesday, anticipating decisions in two key cases regarding same-sex marriage. The court's 5-to-4 decision striking down the Defense of Marriage Act of 1996 will allow people in same-sex marriages who live in states that allow such marriages to receive the same federal benefits as heterosexual couples.

The Supreme Court's decision striking down the federal Defense of Marriage Act of 1996 will result in the fairer treatment of married gay students, financial-aid experts say, giving the government a truer picture of the students' ability to pay for college.

For some students, the ruling will mean more financial aid; for others, it will mean less.

Under the act, which defined marriage as the union between one man and one woman, students in same-sex marriages were considered