You're an older same-sex couple, and you know that many things have changed in today's world. Since the 2015 Defense of Marriage Act, it's been legal to get married anywhere in the United States.
One of the major issues those going through a same-sex divorce have is the reality that marriage was not always legal for same-sex couples. As a result, people who have been together for decades may have a very short marriage but have many assets they need to divide if they divorce.
Same-sex divorces are similar to any traditional divorces, but some couples may face complications. Since the legal date of marriage may not actually reflect how long a same-sex couple has been together, there may be unusual circumstances that the judge has to consider.
In most situations, a same-sex divorce is the same as any other. Two people need to separate their assets, set up custody arrangements and work through other factors involved in their divorce.
A same-sex divorce is usually the same as an opposite-sex divorce, but there might be some special circumstances to consider. For the most part, you'll follow the same guidelines as any other divorce.
In 2014, Colorado's 10th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the Defense of Marriage Act was unconstitutional. When they did, it gave those involved in same-sex relationships the right to marry. It also left many long-term couples questioning what impact, if any, that the elimination of the law from the books would have on them if they looked to split up.
A few months ago, we discussed here on this blog how important it is for same-sex couples who are divorcing to ensure that any prior legal unions, no matter what state they were entered into, are dissolved. Failing to do so can cause complications for couples who want to make a clean break and go their separate ways. However, what if you were never legally married?
If you've waited to marry until you've firmly established your career and bought a home, you aren't alone. Many couples aren't tying the knot until they've had independence and success. Also, for many same-sex couples, marriage wasn't a possibility until the past few years.
You and your spouse have been together for decades -- long before you could legally marry. If you lived in a state that offered domestic partnerships and/or civil unions for same-sex couples, you may have chosen one (or eventually both) of these options to make your partnership official in the eyes of the state where you were living. Then, when you were able to, you got married. In Colorado, that was one year before the U.S. Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage across the country.