When the U.S. Supreme Court ruled for marriage equality, it also cleared the way for couples in a same-sex relationship to dissolve their union legally. However, the process of getting to the final decree may be a bit more complex when it comes to a same-sex divorce. New York residents do have laws that offer protection, but it may still take time to reach a satisfactory settlement agreement.
Just as in an opposite-sex marriage, there are many issues that need to be addressed when it comes to seeking a divorce. Unfortunately, because same-sex relationships were not legally recognized in many states until the 2015 ruling, even the issue of child custody can be more complicated in some situations. There have been cases when the non-biological parent lost the right to continue a relationship with a child because the laws did not recognize the rights of these parents.
Along with attempting to determine custody and visitation for those couples who are raising children, there are the issues of settling the property division and whether a spouse will be entitled to any financial support. Many couples have addressed these matters by drafting a document similar to a prenuptial agreement that dealt with how property would be split and whether there would be a reason to set up spousal support. In many heterosexual marriages, the court takes the length of the marriage into consideration; however, since same-sex marriage was only legally recognized in 2015, the issue of longevity may be a irrelevant.
With the right tools and assistance in place, the process of working through a same-sex divorce can be endured. It may be beneficial for New York residents to set goals for their post-divorce life and draw up a plan that will provide financial stability for the future. An experienced attorney may prove to be a valuable resource throughout the process.