The potential cons of a same-sex divorce in California

By |2022-04-04T16:50:42+00:0018 Dec 2013|Categories: Family Law, Family Law Issues, Property Division|

The potential cons of a same-sex divorce in California

Same-sex couples in the United States have achieved several victories in terms of federal benefits and the number of states that allow gay couples to marry legally. Underlying those celebrations, however, is the reality that marriage, even a same-sex marriage, can end in divorce.

However, same-sex marriages have certain peculiarities in the event of divorce. Considering that most family law issues and divorce laws are tailored to heterosexual marriages, same-sex divorce is sailing in some uncharted legal waters. One expert notes that the gay community may be prepared for same-sex marriage but not for same-sex divorce.

Some of the possible drawbacks of divorce between two homosexuals involve presumptive parenthood, taxes and property division. For example, in a heterosexual marriage, the principle of presumptive parenthood assumes that the husband is the father of the child regardless of circumstances. That principle does not apply to gay marriages. In a same-sex divorce, one partner can separate the child from the other because no law protects both parents.

Another problem with same-sex divorce involves taxes. When the Defense of Marriage Act was overturned, filing joint taxes became advantageous for many gay couples. However, if one party has a huge tax debt before a divorce, filing jointly may add up to some serious tax consequences.

The same goes for the division of assets and marital property. A same-sex divorce may hurt one or the other partner’s financial stability because all assets and liabilities-including vehicles, houses, furniture, bank accounts, retirement accounts and debt-are subject to be divided equally.

As the definition of family dynamics and family law concerns evolves in Orange County, California, and around the nation, same-sex divorce will become an ever bigger issue. Regardless of the harsh reality that a legal same-sex marriage may result in a divorce, the result still depends on the people involved, how they handle the breakup and how they move on afterward. Especially in the area of same-sex marriage and divorce, the guidance of a family law attorney can be invaluable.

Source: Huffington Post, “Same-Sex Couples Are Ready to Get Married, but Maybe Not Divorced,” Colleen Logan, Dec. 6, 2013

About the Author:

Dorie Anne Rogers - The Law Offices of Dorie A. Rogers, APC
Dorie A. Rogers, a Family Law Specialist, Certified by the State Bar of California, has been an attorney since 1981 with an exclusive family law practice located in Orange County. She is accepting dissolution cases with support and property issues including the use of forensics to ascertain business value, community interests and to establish monthly case flow analysis. Ms. Rogers has substantial experience in high conflict custody litigation involving sophisticated psychological issues. She drafts premarital and postmarital agreement designed to define and establish parties' separate and community property interests. Paternity cases and domestic violence matters are considered part of her practice. Ms. Rogers is a court-approved and court-appointed to represent minor children.Ms. Rogers consults with individuals concerned about entering or exiting a relationship. She advises effective strategies for dissolution or premarital planning. Knowledge is power and good planning affords better results.Specialties: Family Law Specialist, Certified by the State Bar of California
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