Everyone, regardless of gender, deserves to love and to be loved. At the end of the day, we are all humans who are capable of loving and being loved by someone. Gone are the days when being “gay” is taboo. Nowadays, being a member of the LGBTQIA (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, and asexual) is even celebrated and given equal rights in many societies.
Same-sex marriage is considered legal in many countries, including the US. States that legally recognized same-sex marriage also allowed couples to hire top rated divorce lawyers for divorce. Prior to that monumental 2015 decision, same-sex couples who lived in a state where same-sex marriage was still banned back then had to travel in another state to get married.
It would soon become a problem when the same-sex couple decided to hire divorce lawyers and end their union. Back then, divorce became complicated especially if they were living in a state that did not allow same-sex marriage. At present, same-sex couples can divorce and avail legal assistance from the best divorce lawyers just like heterosexual couples can.
Filing for divorce
If you and your spouse were married after the 2015 Obergefell v. Hodges ruling became final, divorce can be filed in your home state. However, it is important that you are recognized as a citizen of your current state before you are allowed to file for divorce.
This also applies if you don’t have different registrations for civil unions or domestic partnerships. Ideally, the spouses should be living in their current state for at least six months before they can file for divorce. However, this residency requirement may vary from state to state, so it is best to consult experienced divorce lawyers regarding this concern.
Like any other kinds of divorce, a same-sex couple can be a long and tedious process as well. More so, it can be more complicated if you and your spouse have been together before you have legally-sealed your union through same-sex marriage.
A same-sex couple who plans to get a divorce can also declare a no-fault divorce like in a heterosexual marriage. A no-fault divorce means their decision is not triggered by either spouse’s fault. The couple can decide to divorce if they do not feel the love they used to have before, or if they think their union is already useless.
On the other hand, the spouse can also file for divorce due to abuse, adultery, abandonment, or other reasons where the other spouse is deemed at fault. Then again, terms and conditions may vary depending on the state and it can be more complicated if there are dependents (legally-adopted children), assets, and properties involved. You can consult family lawyers regarding this matter.
Like in heterosexual divorce, same-sex divorcing couples will also have to deal with other matters to settle the divorce. This includes child custody and support. You can hire child support lawyers to help you walk through this process. In such cases, you and your spouse should cooperate with each other in creating a parenting plan and avoid legal tensions on both parties.
However, child custody may depend on certain legalities. For example, the child should be legally adopted by either or both spouse to earn visitation rights. However, if the child is legally-adopted by only one of the spouse, the other spouse may not have visitation rights and custody for the child.
Alimony is another issue divorcing same-sex couples also need to tackle. It can be complicated if you and your spouse have been together for decades prior to getting married and your union recognized by the state. Some states may consider the additional years of togetherness and add it to the total years of marriage. On the other hand, other states may decide otherwise.
Nevertheless, spousal support can be awarded to the financially-challenged spouse albeit with the abovementioned conditions. In California, there is such thing as “palimony” – a type of alimony but is applicable for unmarried couples and will be based on the total years spent in a domestic partnership before legally tying the knot.
Handling other divorce agreements
Divorce can be a complicated, long, and tedious process. It can even create tension between both parties. But if you want to make the divorce as smooth and tension-free as possible, it is best to work together with your spouse. Likewise, you should hire the best divorce lawyers in Fairfax VA.