Before the 2015 ruling of the Supreme Court in favor of gay marriage nationwide, New York was one of the 36 states that had already made it legal for same-sex couples to get married. These states legalized gay marriage through laws, court decisions, or through the ballot box.
New York became the 6th state to legalize gay marriage when it passed the Marriage Equality Act in 2011. The first same-sex couples got married in July that year. Now, if you are a married LGBTW+ couple in New York, you can take advantage of all the state’s benefits, including tax benefits, insurance from a state-licensed agency, health care, and more.
In addition to being able to get married, same-sex couples are now able to get divorced in all states. In other words, same-sex couples who are married have the same legal rights to get a divorce as heterosexual couples. But gay couples who are married can have different problems, like questions about who gets custody of the kids and who gets the money.
This means that same-sex divorce in New York can be really confusing and can be a real pain, especially if it’s been going on for a while and you got married before it was legal.
Here is some useful info about same-sex divorce in New York that can help you.
Basics of same-sex divorce in New York
Whether you are a man or a woman, the rules for getting married in New York are the same. The same goes for same-sex divorces in New York. This means that same-sex divorce in New York laws and rules are the same as all other divorces.
In New York, you do not have to show that your spouse is at fault to get a divorce. You can get a divorce by filing a petition saying you cannot live together with your gay spouse anymore.
If you are filing for same-sex divorce, you will need to meet the residency requirements for your state based on how long you and your spouse have lived there. If you got married in a different state, you will have to file for divorce in the state where you currently live.
If you are married in a country where same-sex marriage is not recognized, some states may still let you get a divorce in their courts if you got married there. It is important to note that for same-sex divorce in New York, one of you has to have lived in New York for at least a year for the divorce to go through.
Online or paper same-sex divorce in New York
Same-sex divorce in New York can be initiated online or through filing of paperwork. Getting a divorce online is a great way to get out of your marriage without having to hire a lawyer. It is usually cheaper and faster than a regular divorce. If you are filing for a same-sex divorce in New York, you will need to meet residency requirements.
Once you have agreed on the main points of separation, you can use web services to get the paperwork ready at a good price. But the complexity that may arise makes it compelling to get a divorce lawyer.
You can also begin a same sex divorce in New York by submitting paperwork to the court in the county they live in. Different counties have different rules, so it is important to do your research before you go to court. You can get divorce forms online or from a divorce lawyer, but it can be expensive, especially if you are dealing with a complicated case.
If you are doing the paperwork yourself (which can be tiring), make sure to read up on the filing process. The paperwork depends on the specifics of the case, like minor kids, property, and custody issues.
Child custody/support and same sex marriage
Depending on when the baby is born, things can get complicated when it comes to child custody. If the baby was born before gay marriage was legal, they may not be considered part of the marriage. Lots of states still have gender-specific language in their laws about who gets to be the parent of a child, but those laws do not have to apply to LGBTQ couples either.
The Supreme Court made it legal for same-sex couples to adopt a child through assisted reproduction in Pavan vs. Smith. This means that same-sex adoption is now legal in every state in the US, and the wife of a mom who had a baby during the marriage will be considered the other parent of the child.
This means that if the baby is born to a non-biological parent, they do not have any automatic rights unless they adopt the child. Nowadays, both parents are considered to be the parents in a same-sex marriage. New York law assumes that both parents have parental rights in a baby born through a surrogate, but it does not apply everywhere.
Minor child support is what parents pay after a marriage ends. It is based on things like the child’s health and educational needs. It also depends on how much money the couple earns, like wages, salaries, disability benefits, or pensions, and how many kids they have.
Spousal support (alimony) and same-sex divorce
LGBT divorces can be tricky when it comes to alimony. Gay couples may be eligible for alimony based on how long they lived together before getting married.
Generally, judges will give alimony to a partner who needs it as long as the other partner can afford it. But judges have a lot of leeway when it comes to deciding how much alimony to award.
They can add extra years of the couple being unmarried to the length of marriage to consider alimony. Some states even allow judges to award alimony based on the number of years they lived together.
Property distribution and same-sex divorce
Basically, in a divorce, the judge divides your marital assets and debts between you and your spouse. Anything you own or gain during the marriage is considered marital property.
However, same-sex couples who lived together before marriage can still face an unfair property split. For instance, if you bought a camper together with a refund before you got married, it is considered a separate property that belongs to one of you only.
Most judges have the power to decide if this is fair, so some judges might decide to split the value of the camper between the two of you. But there is no guarantee that one of you will walk out of the marriage with anything you bought before you got married.
If your same-sex marriage is coming to an end, it is a good idea to talk to a divorce lawyer who knows the ins and outs of same-sex divorces and the legal issues that come with them.
Gehi and Associates is the place to go if you are looking for pragmatic advice for your divorce. We will listen carefully to what you are worried about, what you want out of your case and help your case move forward rapidly.
Get in touch with us to set up a free consultation to talk about your case.