WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court is siding with a retired U.S. marshal who argued that West Virginia discriminated against former federal law enforcement officers like him by giving a more generous tax break to onetime state law enforcers.
The court has ruled 9-0 that West Virginia law unlawfully discriminated against the retired marshal, James Dawson.
West Virginia law exempted the vast majority of state law enforcement retirees, including police and firefighters, from paying income tax on their retirement benefits. But retired U.S. Marshals Service employees such as Dawson didn’t qualify.
The Supreme Court says a state violates federal law when it treats retired state employees more favorably than retired federal employees when no significant differences between the two groups justify the different treatment.