In United States v. Windsor, 133 S. Ct. 2675 (2013), the Supreme Court held section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional as a violation of equal protection and due process principles. Section 3 said that for the purpose of interpreting federal law, "marriage" must be construed as the legal union of one man and one woman as husband and wife and that "spouse" must be construed only as a spouse in a man-woman marriage.
Richard Cordray, the director of the Consumer Finanical Protection Bureau, has issued this letter instructing agency staff to implement Windsor in all of the agency's work. So, for instance, when an regulation enforced by the CFPB uses the term "marriage," the term now includes state-sanctioned same-sex marriages. State-sanctioned civil unions and domestic partnerships will not count, however.