The Pension Protection Act of 2006 was signed into law August 17, 2006. The Act, effective August 17, 2007, provided divorced spouses a railroad retirement annuity independent of the employee's actual entitlement and extended court-ordered partition payments to surviving former spouses. Legislation enacted January 12, 2007, increased the amount employees receiving railroad retirement disability annuities can earn without losing any benefits. Legislation modifying partition payments was signed into law on December 23, 2008.
The Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization, and Job Creation Act of 2010 was signed into law December 17, 2010. Among its provisions, the Act temporarily lowered the social security payroll tax rate on employees, and the corresponding tier I payroll tax rate on railroad employees, by 2 percentage points for calendar year 2011. The Temporary Payroll Tax Cut Continuation Act of 2011 extending the temporary payroll tax reduction through February 2012 was signed into law December 23, 2011. The Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012, signed into law February 22, 2012, extended the reduction through 2012.
On June 26, 2013, the Supreme Court found unconstitutional Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act, which had prevented the Federal Government from recognizing marriages of same-sex couples who were validly licensed under State law. As a result, the RRB began accepting applications for benefits from those eligible spouses in same-sex marriages. On June 26, 2015, the Supreme Court further found that the Constitution required all States to license same-set marriages, and to recognize lawfully licensed same-sex marriages performed in other States.