Gay marriage has been a hot-button topic around the nation in recent years. For years, many in Utah’s LGBT community have fought tirelessly to establish gay marriage. The state finally recognized same-sex marriages since 2013. But what about gay couples that want to file for divorce? On the surface, gay and straight couples appear to have the same issues, such as the division of assets. But when it comes to custody, things suddenly get a little more complicated
While the LGBT community has earned the right to gay marriage, many struggle with the legal ramifications of divorce. If a gay or lesbian couple, prior to their marriage, was granted a civil union in Utah or another state, they must have the marriage dissolved in Utah or the state where that issued the union. However, the couple must meet common law marriage requirements prior to their actual marriage. To determine alimony,
The Rules of Alimony
Under Utah family law, alimony cannot exceed the duration of the marriage. For example, if a couple has been legally married for 2 years, the spouse can only receive half of the other spouse’s retirement benefits accrued during that period. But if they qualify as a common law married couple prior to their official marriage ceremony, they can receive alimony for time further back.
Gay marriage also presents some challenging scenarios for those seeking child custody. Although married couples can now list the non-genetic mother or father as a parent on the birth certificate, same-sex couples may need to consider to seek a second-parent adoption. Gay parents must often make greater contingency plans when it comes to having children due to assisted reproduction. The majority of gay parents tend to be older than their heterosexual counterparts. In many cases, gay couples would have to either have a surrogate or adopt a child.
Choosing a Salt Lake City Divorce Attorney
Regardless of whether a couple is straight or gay, it is vital to seek representation from a Salt Lake City divorce attorney that can address each client’s situation. Before hiring an attorney, make sure they have a track record of dealing with gay divorce. Experience plays a key component in choosing a legal professional that is most qualified to handle your case. Always ask questions about the differences concerning alimony, custody, division of assets and child support. In the case of gay marriage, it is very important the attorney has a background on adoptions and how they work. Prenuptial and postnuptial agreements may also need to be addressed.
Salt Lake City divorce attorney Christopher M. Ault understands the obstacles and challenges facing those going through divorce. He utilizes a comprehensive and personable approach to properly inform and protect the rights of each client. He and his legal team also place a priority on placing the needs of clients first. To learn more on how a Salt Lake City divorce attorney can help, contact the legal professionals at The Ault Firm and schedule a consultation to discuss your case.