Divorces can be challenging and often place a great deal of emotional strain on all parties. Not only does a divorce mark the end of a relationship, but it is also a legal process with unique court procedures that must be followed to legitimately dissolve a marriage.
Many marriages will end in divorce regardless of gender expression or sexual orientation, and when they do, there will be important questions to answer about who gets what and how the parties will share parenting rights. When it comes to LGBTQ couples, divorces are not all that different from those involving heterosexual/heteronormative couples.
Regardless of their genders, divorcing spouses must understand their legal rights to effectively pursue a favorable case outcome. It is advisable to work with an experienced divorce attorney who can represent you during negotiations and other court proceedings. Let a Marietta LGBTQ divorce lawyer counsel you through this difficult time.
Divorcing same-sex parents may have questions about their roles in their children’s lives after their marriage is dissolved. Custody is one of the most complicated aspects of any divorce case. Local family courts must uphold the children’s best interests when making custody decisions on behalf of LGBTQ parents.
Many factors contribute to the court’s determination of a child’s best interests, including who the primary caregiver is, where both parents live, and the child’s preferences if they are old enough to give their input. Parents of any gender should be willing to facilitate a relationship between their children and a former spouse. Judges do not look favorably on any parent who attempts to prevent a child from engaging with their other parent, regardless of their sex or gender expression.
Sometimes, Marietta courts must also consider whether either LGBTQ parent has a history of abuse before making a custody or visitation decision. Whether the divorce case involves contentious custody issues or the parents agree, it is important to keep in mind that custody decisions will impact the parties for many years to come.
Before same-sex marriage was legalized, LGBTQ couples were living as though they were married, raising children and building a marital estate, often leading one party to leave the workforce. The partner who sacrificed their job for their family might have qualified for support payments if their marriage was legally recognized. Alternatively, some same-sex couples married in other jurisdictions that legalized these unions earlier than the Supreme Court decision in 2015.
In Georgia, spousal support and alimony are awarded based in part on the length of a marriage. Courts now must consider the length of domestic partnerships and out-of-state unions when deciding whether to award alimony to spouses in the LGBTQ community. Same-sex or gender non-conforming spouses getting a divorce can benefit from the counsel of an experienced Marietta lawyer who can advocate for the fairest treatment possible in their case.
When spouses in the LGBTQ community get divorced, they must resolve issues that will impact them for years to come. The emotional toll is stressful enough without having to wade through complex legal terms and statutes. Fortunately, a Marietta LGBTQ divorce lawyer can alleviate your legal burdens to allow you to focus on your family.
While it is often possible to alter divorce orders after a case concludes, this can be costly and time-consuming, so it is best to address your marital issues as thoroughly as possible during the initial proceedings. A skilled attorney experienced in LGBTQ divorce cases can help you to create an agreement that protects your rights and interests, so call us today.