BILL NUMBER: AB 205	INTRODUCED
	BILL TEXT


INTRODUCED BY   Assembly Members Goldberg, Kehoe, Koretz, Laird, and
Leno
   (Principal coauthor: Assembly Member Wesson)
   (Principal coauthor: Senator Kuehl)
   (Coauthors: Assembly Members Chu, Hancock, Levine, Lieber,
Longville, Lowenthal, Nation, Nunez, Oropeza, Pavley, and Steinberg)
   (Coauthors: Senators Burton, Cedillo, and Vasconcellos)

                        JANUARY 28, 2003

   An act to amend Sections 297, 298, and 298.5 of, to add Sections
299.1, 299.2, and 299.3 to, and to repeal and add Section 299 of, the
Family Code, to amend Section 14771 of the Government Code, and to
amend Section 18521 of the Revenue and Taxation Code, relating to
domestic partnerships.



	LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


   AB 205, as introduced, Goldberg.  Domestic partners.
   Existing law provides for the issuance of a marriage license and
specifies the rights and obligations of married persons.
   Existing law also provides for the establishment and the
termination of domestic partnerships.  Existing law requires the
Secretary of State to prepare and distribute forms for creating and
terminating domestic partnerships.  Existing law specifies the
requirements for completing the form necessary to create a domestic
partnership and provides that a violation of this provision is a
misdemeanor.
   This bill would enact the California Domestic Partner Rights and
Responsibilities Act of 2003.  The bill would modify the procedure
and the accompanying form for terminating domestic partnerships, and
require additional duties of the Secretary of State in relation, as
specified.  The bill would also revise the requirements for entering
into a domestic partnership to require each person to consent to the
jurisdiction of the superior courts of this state for the purpose of
a proceeding to obtain a judgment of dissolution or nullity of the
domestic partnership.  The bill would revise the provision described
above making it a misdemeanor to violate the provision specifying the
requirements for completing the form necessary to create a domestic
partnership.  The bill would instead specifically provide that filing
an intentionally and materially false Declaration of Domestic
Partnership would be punishable as a misdemeanor, thereby creating a
new crime.  By creating a new crime, this bill would impose a
state-mandated local program.
   The bill would extend the rights and duties of marriage to persons
registered as domestic partners on and after January 1, 2005.  The
bill would provide that the superior courts shall have jurisdiction
over all proceedings governing the dissolution of domestic
partnerships, nullity of domestic partnerships, and legal separation
of partners in domestic partnerships. These proceedings would follow
the same procedures as the equivalent proceedings with respect to
marriage.  The bill would provide that a legal union validly formed
in another jurisdiction that is substantially equivalent to a
domestic partnership would be recognized as a valid domestic
partnership in this state.  The bill would require the Secretary of
State to send a letter on 3 separate, specified occasions to the
mailing address of registered domestic partners informing them of
these changes, as specified.  The bill would also require the
Director of General Services, through the forms management center, to
provide assistance, by January 1, 2005, to state agencies, among
others, in reviewing and revising all public-use forms that refer to
or use the terms spouse, husband, wife, marriage, or marital status
to include references to domestic partner or domestic partnership.
The bill would also make related and conforming changes, including a
provision permitting registered domestic partners to file joint or
separate state tax returns.  The bill would impose a state-mandated
local program by adding to the duties of county clerks.
  The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local
agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the
state.  Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that
reimbursement, including the creation of a State Mandates Claims Fund
to pay the costs of mandates that do not exceed $1,000,000 statewide
and other procedures for claims whose statewide costs exceed
$1,000,000.
   This bill would provide that with regard to certain mandates no
reimbursement is required by this act for a specified reason.
   With regard to any other mandates, this bill would provide that,
if the Commission on State Mandates determines that the bill contains
costs so mandated by the state, reimbursement for those costs shall
be made pursuant to the statutory provisions noted above.
   Vote:  majority.  Appropriation:  no.  Fiscal committee:  yes.
State-mandated local program:  yes.


THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:


  SECTION 1.  (a) This act is intended to help California move closer
to fulfilling the promises of inalienable rights, liberty, and
equality contained in Sections 1 and 7 of Article 1 of the California
Constitution by providing all caring and committed couples,
regardless of their gender or sexual orientation, the opportunity to
obtain essential rights, protections, and benefits and to assume
corresponding responsibilities, obligations, and duties and to
further the state's interest in promoting stable and lasting family
relationships, and protecting Californians from the economic and
social consequences of abandonment, separation, the death of loved
ones, and other life crises.
   (b) The Legislature hereby finds and declares all of the
following:
   (1) The legal recognition of civil marriage by the state has been
the primary and, in a number of instances, the only available source
of many rights, protections, benefits, responsibilities, obligations,
and duties for caring and committed couples and their families under
California law.
   (2) The state's interest in civil marriage is to encourage close
and caring families, to promote stable and lasting family
relationships, and to protect family members from economic and social
consequences of abandonment, divorce, the death of loved ones, and
other life crises.
   (3) Despite longstanding social and economic discrimination, many
lesbian, gay, and bisexual Californians have formed lasting,
committed, and caring relationships with persons of the same sex;
these couples share lives together, participate in their communities
together, and many raise children and care for other dependent family
members together.
   (4) The state has an interest in encouraging close and caring
families, promoting stable and lasting family relationships, and
protecting all family members from the economic and social
consequences of abandonment, separation, the death of loved ones, and
other life crises.
   (5) Without additional legal rights, protections, benefits,
responsibilities, obligations, and duties, domestic partners, the
children they are raising, and elderly or disabled family members for
whom they are caring suffer numerous obstacles and hardship which
directly harm them, lead to numerous harms and costs to third parties
and to the state, and are inequitable.
   (6) Expert studies indicate that approximately 400,000 same-sex
couples reside in California, many of whom are raising children or
caring for elderly or other dependent family members together.
   (7) In 1999, California took an important step to address the
needs of these families by establishing a state-level registry of
domestic partnerships, extending the same right of hospital
visitation to domestic partners who register with the state as is
provided married spouses, and extending health insurance benefits to
the registered domestic partners of those employed by state and local
governments.  In 2001, California provided the following additional
legal protections to those in registered domestic partnerships:
authority to make health care decisions on behalf of an incapacitated
domestic partner; use of sick leave to care for an ill domestic
partner or the ill child of a domestic partner; the requirement that
insurers offer group health care coverage for domestic partners on
comparable terms to that offered for legal dependents of an insured
employee or individual subscriber; a priority position in a
proceeding to appoint a conservator for one's domestic partner;
inclusion of domestic partners as a designated beneficiary in the
state statutory will form; a presumption in favor of a domestic
partner to be appointed the administrator of a predeceased partner's
estate; permitting deduction from taxable income of the cost of
health insurance for a domestic partner in the calculation of state
income taxes; for purposes of eligibility for unemployment
compensation, defining good cause for leaving one's job to include
relocation of the employment of one's domestic partner; authorizing a
domestic partner to file a claim for disability benefits on behalf
of an incapacitated partner; the right to sue for wrongful death of
one's domestic partner; the right to sue for negligent infliction of
emotional distress for witnessing injury to one's domestic partner;
and stepparent adoption by a domestic partner.  The horrifying loss
of American lives, including scores of California residents, on
September 11, 2001, confirmed tragically that a large portion of the
general population does not prepare wills or other estate plans; in
2002, California extended to registered domestic partners the right
to take through intestate succession a share of a predeceased
domestic partner's estate.  The state also has extended to registered
domestic partners rights with respect to residing in senior citizen
housing and has authorized several counties to provide death benefits
and survivor's allowances to the registered domestic partners of
their employees.
   (8) California has no legitimate state interest in denying to
persons in domestic partnerships and their children and dependent
family members the opportunity to obtain the additional rights,
protections, benefits, responsibilities, obligations, and duties they
currently are denied, including, without limitation, all of the
following:
   (A) Laws relating to domestic relations, including, but not
limited to, rights and obligations of financial support during and
after the relationship, community property, and evidentiary
privileges.
   (B) Laws relating to child custody, visitation, and duties of
financial support of children.
   (C) Laws relating to title and other incidents of the acquisition,
ownership, or transfer of real or personal property during life or
at death, as well as laws relating to access to student family
housing, senior citizen housing, and rent control protections.
   (D) Laws relating to obligations to make disclosures regarding
spousal relationships and to take other steps to prevent conflicts of
interest and self-dealing.
   (E) Laws relating to government benefits, including, but not
limited to, workers' compensation, public assistance, transfer of
licenses upon death, and the ability to apply for absentee ballots
and other documents for a spouse.
   (F) Laws relating to taxes, including, but not limited to, joint
filing of income tax returns, marital tax exemptions, estate tax
exemptions, and nonreassessment of real property upon a spouse's
death.
   (G) Laws relating to health insurance coverage for family members,
family care and medical leave, bereavement leave, coverage of family
members under medical, dental, life, and disability insurance, and
spousal pension rights and death benefits.
   (H) Laws relating to legal claims related to, or dependent upon,
family status, including, but not limited to, claims for loss of
consortium, and victim's compensation.
   (I) Laws relating to anatomical gifts, consent to autopsy and
disposition of remains, and rights of burial in family cemeteries.
   (J) Laws prohibiting marital status discrimination.
   (9) There is no legitimate reason to limit the rights,
protections, and benefits, or the responsibilities, obligations, and
duties provided to or imposed upon registered domestic partners as
those currently provided to or imposed upon them.  California
likewise has no legitimate reason not to provide parity between the
rights, protections, and benefits, as well as the responsibilities,
obligations, and duties, of registered domestic partners and those
who enter a civil marriage.
   (10) Subjecting registered domestic partners to additional legal
responsibilities, obligations, and duties, as well as providing
registered domestic partners additional rights, protections, and
benefits, will both reduce certain expenses for the state and
increase certain revenues to the state.  Expenses will be reduced,
among other ways, because registered domestic partners will have an
enforceable duty of support for their partners and the income of
domestic partners will be able to be considered in assessing an
individual's qualification for means-tested government assistance
programs. Revenues will be increased, among other ways, because
treating domestic partners for income tax purposes in the same ways
as those who are married will increase the amount of income tax that
is due in many instances.
   (11) The California Constitution provides that all people have
inalienable rights, including pursuing and obtaining safety,
happiness and privacy; that no person may be deprived of liberty
without due process of law or denied equal protection of the laws;
and that no citizen or class of citizens may be granted privileges or
immunities not granted on the same terms to all citizens.  Moreover,
California's statutes and case law increasingly have acknowledged
the state's interest in recognizing same-sex relationships, providing
individuals in these relationships treatment under state law
comparable to that afforded persons in different-sex relationships
who have married, and ending discrimination on the bases of sex and
sexual orientation.
   (12) Expanding the rights and responsibilities of registered
domestic partners would further California's interest in encouraging
close and caring families, promoting stable and lasting family
relationships, and protecting family members from economic and social
consequences of abandonment, separation, the death of loved ones,
and other life crises; would protect these couples, the children they
are raising, third parties, and the state against numerous harms and
costs; would reduce discrimination on the bases of sex and sexual
orientation; and would provide these couples the opportunity to
obtain additional rights, protections, benefits, responsibilities,
obligations, and duties.
   (c) This act is not intended to repeal or adversely affect any
other ways in which relationships between adults may be recognized,
or given effect in California, or the legal consequences of those
relationships, including, among other things, civil marriage,
enforcement of palimony agreements, enforcement of powers of
attorney, appointment of conservators or guardians, and petitions for
second parent or limited consent adoption.
  SEC. 2.  This act shall be known and may be cited as "The
California Domestic Partner Rights and Responsibilities Act of 2003."

  SEC. 3.  Section 297 of the Family Code is amended to read:
   297.  (a) Domestic partners are two adults who have chosen to
share one another's lives in an intimate and committed relationship
of mutual caring.
   (b) A domestic partnership shall be established in California when
all of the following requirements are met:
   (1) Both persons have a common residence.
   (2)  Both persons agree to be jointly responsible for each
other's basic living expenses incurred during the domestic
partnership.
   (3)  Neither person is married or a member of another
domestic partnership  that has not been terminated, dissolved, or
adjudged a nullity  .  
   (4)  
   (3)  The two persons are not related by blood in a way that
would prevent them from being married to each other in this state.

   (5)  
   (4)  Both persons are at least 18 years of age.  
   (6)  
   (5)  Either of the following:
   (A) Both persons are members of the same sex.
   (B) One or both of the persons meet the eligibility criteria under
Title II of the Social Security Act as defined in 42 U.S.C. Section
402(a) for old-age insurance benefits or Title XVI of the Social
Security Act as defined in 42 U.S.C. Section 1381 for aged
individuals.  Notwithstanding any other provision of this section,
persons of opposite sexes may not constitute a domestic partnership
unless one or both of the persons are over the age of 62.  
   (7)  
   (6)  Both persons are capable of consenting to the domestic
partnership.  
   (8) Neither person has previously filed a Declaration of Domestic
Partnership with the Secretary of State pursuant to this division
that has not been terminated under Section 299.
   (9)  
   (7)  Both  persons  file a Declaration of Domestic
Partnership with the Secretary of State pursuant to this division.
   (c) "Have a common residence" means that both domestic partners
share the same residence.  It is not necessary that the legal right
to possess the common residence be in both of their names.  Two
people have a common residence even if one or both have additional
residences.  Domestic partners do not cease to have a common
residence if one leaves the common residence but intends to return.

   (d) "Basic living expenses" means shelter, utilities, and all
other costs directly related to the maintenance of the common
household of the common residence of the domestic partners.  It also
means any other cost, such as medical care, if some or all of the
cost is paid as a benefit because a person is another person's
domestic partner.
   (e) "Joint responsibility" means that each partner agrees to
provide for the other partner's basic living expenses if the partner
is unable to provide for herself or himself.  Persons to whom these
expenses are owed may enforce this responsibility if, in extending
credit or providing goods or services, they relied on the existence
of the domestic partnership and the agreement of both partners to be
jointly responsible for those specific expenses. 
  SEC. 4.  Section 298 of the Family Code is amended to read:
   298.  (a) The Secretary of State shall prepare forms entitled
"Declaration of Domestic Partnership" and "Notice of Termination of
Domestic Partnership" to meet the requirements of this division.
These forms shall require the signature and seal of an acknowledgment
by a notary public to be binding and valid.
   (b) (1) The Secretary of State shall distribute these forms to
each county clerk.  These forms shall be available to the public at
the office of the Secretary of State and each county clerk.
   (2) The Secretary of State shall, by regulation, establish fees
for the actual costs of processing each of these forms, and shall
charge these fees to persons filing the forms.
   (c) The Declaration of Domestic Partnership shall require each
person who wants to become a domestic partner to (1) state that he or
she meets the requirements of Section 297 at the time the form is
signed, (2) provide a mailing address, (3)  state that he or she
consents to the jurisdiction of the Superior Courts of California for
the purpose of a proceeding to obtain a judgment of dissolution or
nullity of the domestic partnership or for legal separation of
partners in the domestic partnership even if one or both partners
ceases to be a resident of, or to maintain a domicile in, this state,
(4)  sign the form with a declaration that representations made
therein are true, correct, and contain no material omissions of fact
to the best knowledge and belief of the applicant, and  (4)
  (5)  have a notary public acknowledge his or her
signature.  Both partners' signatures shall be affixed to one
Declaration of Domestic Partnership form, which form shall then be
transmitted to the Secretary of State according to the instructions
provided on the form.   Violations of this subdivision are
  Filing an intentionally and materially false
Declaration of Domestic Partnership shall be  punishable as a
misdemeanor.
  SEC. 5.  Section 298.5 of the Family Code is amended to read:
   298.5.  (a) Two persons desiring to become domestic partners may
complete and file a Declaration of Domestic Partnership with the
Secretary of State.
   (b) The Secretary of State shall register the Declaration of
Domestic Partnership in a registry for those partnerships, and shall
return a copy of the registered form to the domestic partners at the
 mailing  address provided by the domestic partners 
as their common residence  .
   (c) No person who has filed a Declaration of Domestic Partnership
may file a new Declaration of Domestic Partnership  until at
least six months after the date that a Notice of Termination of
Domestic Partnership was filed with the Secretary of State pursuant
to subdivision (b) of Section 299 in connection with the termination
  or enter a civil marriage with someone other than
their registered domestic partner unless the most recent domestic
partnership has been terminated or a final judgment of dissolution or
nullity  of the most recent domestic partnership  has been
entered  .  This prohibition does not apply if the previous
domestic partnership ended because one of the partners died 
or married  .
  SEC. 6.  Section 299 of the Family Code is repealed.  
   299.  (a) A domestic partnership is terminated when any one of the
following occurs:
   (1) One partner gives or sends to the other partner a written
notice by certified mail that he or she is terminating the
partnership.
   (2) One of the domestic partners dies.
   (3) One of the domestic partners marries.
   (4) The domestic partners no longer have a common residence.
   (b) Upon termination of a domestic partnership, at least one
former partner shall file a Notice of Termination of Domestic
Partnership with the Secretary of State by mailing a completed form
to the Secretary of State by certified mail.  The date on which the
Notice of Termination of Domestic Partnership is received by the
Secretary of State shall be deemed the actual termination date of the
domestic partnership, unless termination is caused by the death or
marriage of a domestic partner, in which case the actual termination
date shall be the date indicated on the Notice of Termination of
Domestic Partnership form.  The partner who files the Notice of
Termination of Domestic Partnership shall send a copy of the notice
to the last known address of the other partner.
   (c) A former domestic partner who has given a copy of a
Declaration of Domestic Partnership to any third party in order to
qualify for any benefit or right shall, within 60 days of termination
of the domestic partnership, give or send to the third party, at the
last known address of the third party, written notification that the
domestic partnership has been terminated.  A third party who suffers
a loss as a result of failure by the domestic partner to send this
notice shall be entitled to seek recovery from the partner who was
obligated to send it for any actual loss resulting thereby.
   (d) Failure to provide the third-party notice required in
subdivision (c) shall not delay or prevent the termination of the
domestic partnership. 
  SEC. 7.  Section 299 is added to the Family Code, to read:
   299.  (a) A domestic partnership may be terminated without filing
a proceeding for dissolution of domestic partnership by the filing of
a Notice of Termination of Domestic Partnership with the Secretary
of State pursuant to this section, provided that all of the following
conditions exist at the time of the filing:
   (1) The Notice of Termination of Domestic Partnership is signed by
both domestic partners.
   (2) There are no children of the relationship of the parties born
before or after registration of the domestic partnership or adopted
by the parties after registration of the domestic partnership, and
neither of the domestic partners, to their knowledge, is pregnant.
   (3) The domestic partnership is not more than five years in
duration.
   (4) Neither party has any interest in real property wherever
situated, with the exception of the lease of a residence occupied by
either party which satisfies the following requirements:
   (A) The lease does not include an option to purchase.
   (B) The lease terminates within one year from the date of filing
of the Notice of Termination of Domestic Partnership.
   (5) There are no unpaid obligations in excess of the amount which
would preclude the filing of a summary dissolution pursuant to
paragraph (6) of subdivision (a) of Section 2400, as adjusted by
subdivision (b) of Section 2400, incurred by either or both of the
parties after registration of the domestic partnership, excluding the
amount of any unpaid obligation with respect to an automobile.
   (6) The total fair market value of community property assets,
excluding all encumbrances and automobiles, including any deferred
compensation or retirement plan, is less than the amount which would
preclude the filing of a summary dissolution pursuant to paragraph
(7) of subdivision (a) of Section 2400, as adjusted by subdivision
(b) of Section 2400, and neither party has separate property assets,
excluding all encumbrances and automobiles, in excess of that amount.

   (7) The parties have executed an agreement setting forth the
division of assets and the assumption of liabilities of the community
property, and have executed any documents, title certificates, bills
of sale, or other evidence of transfer necessary to effectuate the
agreement.
   (8) The parties waive any rights to spousal support.
   (9) The parties have read and understand a brochure prepared by
the Secretary of State describing the requirements, nature, and
effect of terminating a domestic partnership.
   (10) Both parties desire that the domestic partnership be
terminated.
   (b) The domestic partnership shall be terminated effective six
months after the date of filing of the Notice of Termination of
Domestic Partnership with the Secretary of State pursuant to this
section, provided that neither party has, before that date, filed
with the Secretary of State a notice of revocation of the termination
of domestic partnership, in the form and content as shall be
prescribed by the Secretary of State, and sent to the other party a
copy of the notice of revocation by first-class mail, postage
prepaid, at the other party's last known address.  The effect of
termination of a domestic partnership pursuant to this section shall
be the same as, and shall be treated for all purposes as, the entry
of a judgment of dissolution of a domestic partnership.
   (c) The termination of a domestic partnership pursuant to this
section does not prejudice nor bar the rights of either of the
parties to institute an action to set aside the termination for
fraud, duress, mistake, or any other ground recognized at law or in
equity.  A court shall set aside the termination of domestic
partnership and declare the domestic partnership null and void upon
proof that the parties did not meet the requirements of subdivision
(a) at the time of the filing of the Notice of Termination of
Domestic Partnership with the Secretary of State.
   (d) The superior courts shall have jurisdiction over all
proceedings relating to the dissolution of domestic partnerships,
nullity of domestic partnerships, and legal separation of partners in
a domestic partnership.  The dissolution of a domestic partnership,
nullity of a domestic partnership, and legal separation of partners
in a domestic partnership shall follow the same procedures, and the
partners shall possess the same rights, protections, and benefits,
and be subject to the same responsibilities, obligations, and duties,
as apply to the dissolution of marriage, nullity of marriage, and
legal separation of spouses in a marriage, respectively, except as
provided in subdivision (a), and except that, in accordance with the
consent acknowledged by domestic partners in the Declaration of
Domestic Partnership form, proceedings for dissolution, nullity, or
legal separation of a domestic partnership registered in this state
may be filed in the superior courts of this state even if neither
domestic partner is a resident of, or maintains a domicile in, the
state at the time the proceedings are filed.
  SEC. 8.  Section 299.1 is added to the Family Code, to read:
   299.1.  (a) Registered domestic partners shall have the same
rights, protections, and benefits, and shall be subject to the same
responsibilities, obligations, and duties under law, whether they
derive from statutes, administrative regulations, court rules,
government policies, common law, or any other provisions or sources
of law, as are granted to and imposed upon spouses in a civil
marriage.
   (b) Former registered domestic partners shall have the same
rights, protections, and benefits, and shall be subject to the same
responsibilities, obligations, and duties under law, whether they
derive from statutes, administrative regulations, court rules,
government policies, common law, or any other provisions or sources
of law, as are granted to and imposed upon former spouses in a civil
marriage.
   (c) A surviving registered domestic partner, following the death
of the other partner, shall have the same rights, protections, and
benefits, and shall be subject to the same responsibilities,
obligations, and duties under law, whether they derive from statutes,
administrative regulations, court rules, government policies, common
law, or any other provisions or sources of law, as are granted to
and imposed upon a widow or a widower of a civil marriage.
   (d) The rights and obligations of registered domestic partners
with respect to a child of either of them shall be the same as those
of married spouses.  The rights and obligations of former or
surviving registered domestic partners with respect to a child of
either of them shall be the same as those of former or surviving
spouses in a civil marriage.
   (e) To the extent that provisions of California law adopt, refer
to, or rely upon, provisions of federal law in a way that otherwise
would cause registered domestic partners to be treated differently
than spouses in a civil marriage, registered domestic partners shall
be treated by California law as if federal law recognized a domestic
partnership in the same manner as California law.
   (f) No public agency in this state may discriminate against any
person or couple on the ground that the person or couple is in a
registered domestic partnership rather than in a civil marriage.
   (g) Registered domestic partners shall have the same rights
regarding non-discrimination as those provided to spouses in a civil
marriage.
        SEC. 9.  Section 299.2 is added to the Family Code, to read:

   299.2.  (a) A domestic partnership is not invalid because one or
both of the partners has at any time changed his or her gender.
   (b) A legal union of two persons that was validly formed in
another jurisdiction, and that is substantially equivalent to a
domestic partnership as defined in this part, shall be recognized as
a valid domestic partnership in this state regardless of whether it
bears the name domestic partnership.
  SEC. 10.  Section 299.3 is added to the Family Code, to read:
   299.3.  (a) On or before June 30, 2004, and again on or before
December 1, 2004, and again on or before January 31, 2005, the
Secretary of State shall send the following letter to the mailing
address on file of each registered domestic partner who registered
more than one month prior to each of those dates:
"Dear Registered Domestic Partner:

   This letter is being sent to all persons who have registered with
the Secretary of State as a domestic partner.
   Effective January 1, 2005, California's law related to the rights
and responsibilities of registered domestic partners will change (or,
if you are receiving this letter after that date, the law has
changed, as of January 1, 2005).  With this new legislation, for
purposes of California law, domestic partners will have a great many
new rights and responsibilities, including laws governing community
property and taxation, those governing property transfer, those
regarding duties of mutual financial support and mutual
responsibilities for certain debts to third parties, and many others.
  The way domestic partnerships are terminated is also changing.
After January 1, 2005, under certain circumstances, it will be
necessary to participate in a dissolution proceeding in court to end
a domestic partnership.
   Domestic partners who do not wish to be subject to these new
rights and responsibilities MUST terminate their domestic partnership
before January 1, 2005.  Under the law in effect until January 1,
2005, your domestic partnership is automatically terminated if you or
your partner marry or die while you are registered as domestic
partners.  It is also terminated if you send to your partner or your
partner sends to you, by certified mail, a notice terminating the
domestic partnership, or if you and your partner no longer share a
common residence.  In all cases, you are required to file a Notice of
Termination of Domestic Partnership.
   If you do not terminate your domestic partnership before January
1, 2005, as provided above, you will be subject to these new rights
and responsibilities and, under certain circumstances, you will only
be able to terminate your domestic partnership, other than as a
result of domestic partner's death, by the filing of a court action.

   If you have any questions about any of these changes, please
consult an attorney.  If you cannot find an attorney in your locale,
please contact your county bar association for a referral.
Sincerely,
The Secretary of State"

   (b) From January 1, 2004, to December 31, 2004, inclusive, the
Secretary of State shall provide the following notice with all
requests for the Declaration of Domestic Partnership form.  The
Secretary of State also shall attach the Notice to the Declaration of
Domestic Partnership form that is provided to the general public on
the Secretary of State's Web site:
      "NOTICE TO POTENTIAL DOMESTIC PARTNER REGISTRANTS

   As of January 1, 2005, California's law of domestic partnership
will change.
   Beginning at that time, for purposes of California law, domestic
partners will have a great many new rights and responsibilities,
including laws governing the community property and taxation, those
governing property transfer, those regarding duties of mutual
financial support and mutual responsibilities for certain debts to
third parties, and many others.  The way domestic partnerships are
terminated will also change.  Unlike current law, which allows
partners to end their partnership simply by filing a "Termination of
Domestic Partnership" form with the Secretary of State, after January
1, 2005, it will be necessary under certain circumstances to
participate in a dissolution proceeding in court to end a domestic
partnership.
   If you have questions about these changes, please consult an
attorney.  If you cannot find an attorney in your area, please
contact your county bar association for a referral."

  SEC. 11.  Section 14771 of the Government Code is amended to read:

   14771.  (a) The director, through the forms management center,
shall do all of the following:
   (1) Establish a State Forms Management Program for all state
agencies, and provide assistance in establishing internal forms
management capabilities.
   (2) Study, develop, coordinate and initiate forms of interagency
and common administrative usage, and establish basic state design and
specification criteria to effect the standardization of public-use
forms.
   (3) Provide assistance to state agencies for economical forms
design and forms art work composition and establish and supervise
control procedures to prevent the undue creation and reproduction of
public-use forms.
   (4) Provide assistance, training, and instruction in forms
management techniques to state agencies, forms management
representatives, and departmental forms coordinators, and provide
direct administrative and forms management assistance to new state
organizations as they are created.
   (5) Maintain a central cross index of public-use forms to
facilitate the standardization of these forms, to eliminate redundant
forms, and to provide a central source of information on the usage
and availability of forms.
   (6) Utilize appropriate procurement techniques to take advantage
of competitive bidding, consolidated orders, and contract procurement
of forms, and work directly with the  State Printer
  Office of State Printing  toward more efficient,
economical and timely procurement, receipt, storage, and distribution
of state forms.
   (7) Coordinate the forms management program with the existing
state archives and records management program to insure timely
disposition of outdated forms and related records.
   (8) Conduct periodic evaluations of the effectiveness of the
overall forms management program and the forms management practices
of the individual state agencies, and maintain records which indicate
net dollar savings which have been realized through centralized
forms management.
   (9) Develop and promulgate rules and standards to implement the
overall purposes of this section.
   (10) Create and maintain by July 1, 1986, a complete and
comprehensive inventory of public-use forms in current use by the
state.
   (11) Establish and maintain, by July 1, 1986, an index of all
public-use forms in current use by the state.
   (12) Assign, by January 1, 1987, a control number to all
public-use forms in current use by the state.
   (13) Establish a goal to reduce the existing burden of state
collections of public information by 30 percent by July 1, 1987, and
to reduce that burden by an additional 15 percent by July 1, 1988.
   (14)  Provide assistance, by January 1, 2005, to state
agencies, forms management representatives, and departmental forms
coordinators, in reviewing and revising all public-use forms that
refer to or use the terms spouse, husband, wife, marriage, or marital
status appropriately to include references to domestic partner or
domestic partnership.
   (15)  Delegate implementing authority to state agencies where
the delegation will result in the most timely and economical method
of accomplishing the responsibilities set forth in this section.
   The director, through the forms management center, may require any
agency to revise any public-use form which the director determines
is inefficient.
   (b) Due to the need for tax forms to be available to the public on
a timely basis, all tax forms, including returns, schedules,
notices, and instructions prepared by the Franchise Tax Board for
public use in connection with its administration of the Personal
Income Tax Law, Senior Citizens Property Tax Assistance and
Postponement Law, Bank and Corporation Tax Law, and the Political
Reform Act of 1974 and the State Board of Equalization's
administration of county assessment standards, state-assessed
property, timber tax, sales and use tax, hazardous substances tax,
alcoholic beverage tax, cigarette tax, motor vehicle fuel license
tax, use fuel tax, energy resources surcharge, emergency telephone
users surcharge, insurance tax, and universal telephone service tax
shall be exempt from subdivision (a), and, instead, each board shall
do all of the following:
   (1) Establish a goal to standardize, consolidate, simplify,
efficiently manage, and, where possible, reduce the number of tax
forms.
   (2) Create and maintain, by July 1, 1986, a complete and
comprehensive inventory of tax forms in current use by the board.
   (3) Establish and maintain, by July 1, 1986, an index of all tax
forms in current use by the board.
   (4) Report to the Legislature, by January 1, 1987, on its progress
to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of all tax forms.
   (c) The director, through the forms management center, shall
develop and maintain, by December 31, 1995, an ongoing master
inventory of all nontax reporting forms required of businesses by
state agencies, including a schedule for notifying each state agency
of the impending expiration of certain report review requirements
pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 14775.
  SEC. 12.  Section 18521 of the Revenue and Taxation Code is amended
to read:
   18521.  (a) (1) Except as otherwise provided in this section, an
individual shall use the same filing status that he or she used on
his or her federal income tax return filed for the same taxable year.

   (2) If the Franchise Tax Board determines that the filing status
used on the taxpayer's federal income tax return was incorrect, the
Franchise Tax Board may, under Section 19033 (relating to deficiency
assessments), revise the return to reflect a correct filing status.
   (3) If either spouse was a nonresident for any portion of the
taxable year, a husband and wife who file a joint federal income tax
return shall be required to file a joint nonresident return.
   (b) In the case of an individual who is not required to file a
federal income tax return for the taxable year, that individual may
use any filing status on the return required under this part that he
or she would be eligible to use on a federal income tax return for
the same taxable year if a federal income tax return was required.
   (c) Notwithstanding subdivision (a), a husband and wife may file
separate returns under this part if either spouse was either of the
following during the taxable year:
   (1) An active member of the armed forces or any auxiliary branch
thereof.
   (2) A nonresident for the entire taxable year who had no income
from a California source.
   (d)  Notwithstanding subdivision (a), registered domestic
partners may either file a joint return or file separately by
applying the standards applicable to married couples under federal
income tax law.
   (e)  Except for taxpayers described in  subdivision
  subdivisions  (c)  or (d)  , for any
taxable year with respect to which a joint return has been filed, a
separate return shall not be made by either spouse  or domestic
partner  after the period for either to file a separate return
has expired.  
   (e)  
   (f)  No joint return  shall   may 
be made if the husband and wife  or the domestic partners 
have different taxable years; except that if their taxable years
begin on the same day and end on different days because of the death
of either or both, then a joint return may be made with respect to
the taxable year of each.  The above exception  shall
  does  not apply if the surviving spouse remarries
or the surviving domestic partner enters a new domestic
partnership  before the close of his or her taxable year, or if
the taxable year of either spouse is a fractional part of a year
under Section 443(a) of the Internal Revenue Code.  
   (f)  
   (g)  In the case of the death of one spouse  or domestic
partner  or both spouses  or domestic partners  the
joint return with respect to the decedent may be made only by the
decedent's executor or administrator; except that, in the case of the
death of one spouse  or domestic partner  , the joint
return may be made by the surviving spouse with respect to both that
spouse  or domestic partner  and the decedent if no return
for the taxable year has been made by the decedent, no executor or
administrator has been appointed, and no executor or administrator is
appointed before the last day prescribed by law for filing the
return of the surviving spouse  or domestic partner  .  If
an executor or administrator of the decedent is appointed after the
making of the joint return by the surviving spouse  or domestic
partner  , the executor or administrator may disaffirm the joint
return by making, within one year after the last day prescribed by
law for filing the return of the surviving spouse  or domestic
partner  , a separate return for the taxable year of the
decedent with respect to which the joint return was made, in which
case the return made by the survivor shall constitute his or her
separate return.
  SEC. 13.  The provisions of Sections 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, and 12 of
this act shall become operative on January 1, 2005.
  SEC. 14.  This act shall be construed liberally in order to secure
to eligible couples who register as domestic partners the full range
of legal rights, protections and benefits, as well as all of the
responsibilities, obligations, and duties to each other, to their
children, to third parties and to the state, as the laws of
California extend to and impose upon those who enter a civil
marriage.
  SEC. 15.  The provisions of this act are severable.  If any
provision of this act is held to be invalid, or if any application
thereof to any person or circumstance is held to be invalid, the
invalidity shall not affect other provisions or applications that may
be given effect without the invalid provision or application.
  SEC. 16.  No reimbursement is required by this act pursuant to
Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution for
certain costs  that may be incurred by a local agency or school
district because in that regard this act creates a new crime or
infraction, eliminates a crime or infraction, or changes the penalty
for a crime or infraction, within the meaning of Section 17556 of the
Government Code, or changes the definition of a crime within the
meaning of Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California
Constitution.
   However, notwithstanding Section 17610 of the Government Code, if
the Commission on State Mandates determines that this act contains
other costs mandated by the state, reimbursement to local agencies
and school districts for those costs shall be made pursuant to Part 7
(commencing with Section 17500) of Division 4 of Title 2 of the
Government Code.  If the statewide cost of the claim for
reimbursement does not exceed one million dollars ($1,000,000),
reimbursement shall be made from the State Mandates Claims Fund.