Helping Same-Sex Couples Navigate The California Divorce Process

The road for same-sex couples to gain full marriage equality in California has been a long and hard-fought one. From the joy of initial approval in 2008 to dealing with the setbacks created by the passage of Proposition 8 until its ultimate defeat in 2013, same-sex couples finally have all of the same rights as different-sex couples.

Unfortunately, along with same-sex couples' right to marry comes the possibility that their marriages could end in divorce. Just like any other couple, sometimes marriage does not work for two people, and they must turn to a court to dissolve the marriage. Same-sex divorce works in the same manner as divorce for a different-sex couple, but the need for effective legal counsel can be much more important in a same-sex divorce. There can be unique issues surrounding things like child custody and support, and, with the same-sex marriage law still in relative infancy, some courts are still unclear with regard to how the law works.

At Contreras Law Firm, we have experience representing clients in all aspects of same-sex divorce as well as the dissolution of domestic partnerships.

Same-Sex Divorce In California

Since same-sex marriage only recently became legal in California, couples who had been together for years before they were allowed the right to marry often enter into a marriage with extensive "community property," but it will not be recognized as such under California law. Many couples had lives and children together for decades prior to their marriage, but courts only deal with assets acquired beginning on the date of the marriage. It is often up to the couples to work through the estate as it existed prior to marriage in order to determine community and separate property before the entire marital estate can be divided.

Same-sex divorces can be resolved in mediation, much like divorce settlements for different-sex couples, which can be a cost-effective solution to divorce for couples who are able to work together. It is important that you begin divorce negotiations understanding what you and your spouse each want from the settlement, as well as any child custody agreements. While these are not always easily agreed-upon decisions, making these decisions outside of court can help you cut down on court fees.

Contreras Law Firm | San Diego, California, Family Law Firm

Navigating the new legal waters of same-sex divorce requires the expertise of experienced family law attorneys. At Contreras Law Firm, we understand that our clients would like to resolve a same-sex divorce in the most efficient and stress-free manner possible, and we will work hard to ensure that you do not waste time waiting for what should be a routine resolution. We will work hard to protect your claim to separate property that was acquired prior to the marriage but would have been considered community property if you were allowed to marry.

Contact our San Diego office today to schedule a initial free consultation with a lawyer.

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