Attorneys
Divorce and Family Law

What about same-sex divorce is so complicated?

The U.S. Supreme Court repealed the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) in 2015. Same-sex marriage finally became lawful in Michigan and every other state in the country once the justices entered their ruling. At least 491,000 same-sex couples have taken the plunge and gotten married since then. But, many of those marriages have also ended in divorce.

Same-sex divorces carry with them many complications. Some of those complexities stem from the fact that many gay and lesbian couples could only enter into domestic partnerships until 2015. Many of those who were party to these relationships had been together for many years, decades even, when state and federal officials began recognizing these individuals’ right to marry.

Many domestic partners chose to marry without ever severing their lawful partnership when marriage became an available option for them. These individuals ended up being a party to two legal relationships when they did this. These same-sex couples found themselves having to file to end their domestic partnerships and marriages when they split. Family law judges struggled to determine how to handle property division and spousal support matters due to this.

State laws regarding paternity or parentage haven’t caught up with the times. Some sex-sex spouses find themselves still having to adopt their biological children to gain parental rights over them. If they don’t do this, then child custody, visitation and support discussions often get even more convoluted. One parent may end up with no legal standing to see their child.

There are many unique aspects associated with same-sex divorce. Michigan family law judges are only beginning to learn how to manage these types of cases fairly. An attorney who handles same-sex divorce cases can advocate for your interests to achieve the results you seek.