(CNN) – Campaign donations from married same-sex couples will fall under the same rules as those from heterosexual pairs, the federal board that regulates elections ruled Thursday.
The 5-0 Federal Election Commission decision came after last month's Supreme Court ruling that struck down key portions of the Defense of Marriage Act, which defined marriage as between one man and one woman. Before it was deemed unconstitutional, the measure prevented the federal government from recognizing same-sex marriages.
"The Commission concludes same-sex couples married under state law are 'spouses' for the purpose of Commission regulations," FEC chairwoman Ellen Weintraub wrote in the advisory opinion that was approved Thursday.
Gay and lesbian couples who are married will now fall under rules that allow spouses to jointly contribute $10,400 to primary and general election candidates, even if one of the partners doesn't make an income.
A second rule change will allow same-sex couples who are married to use funds from joint bank accounts to help fund their own political campaigns.
Federal agencies are currently reviewing their policies to ensure they comply with the court's decision on same-sex marriage. In early July, the Department of Homeland Security said U.S. immigration officers would begin reviewing visa applications for same-sex spouses of American citizens.
And the Office of Personnel Management sent a memorandum to various federal agencies shortly after the ruling informing them that same-sex spouses are now eligible for health insurance, life insurance and retirement coverage. The children of such couples also will be able to participate in many of the programs.
The FEC's decision came after requests from the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee and Massachusetts state Rep. Dan Winslow, who asked the commission to clarify their rules for same-sex couples. Originally, the election board said in April that while DOMA remained in effect, they were barred from treating married same-sex couples the same as heterosexual couples.
After the court's ruling, the groups renewed their requests.
"We are incredibly pleased that the FEC agreed with our request and voted unanimously to allow gay couples who marry the same rights and responsibilities in the electoral process as straight couples," DSCC executive director Guy Cecil said Thursday. "While this victory was a long time coming, it's proof that with hard work our grassroots supporters can achieve victories outside of the ballot box, as well as on election day, that make our country a more fair and just place to live."