Marriage equality is a hot button issue in the United States, with state governments continually granting homosexual couples the right to marry. While some couples are rejoicing and celebrating by marrying their longtime partners, others are facing the obstacle of trying to divorce in a state that doesn't recognize their marriage.
As previously discussed, same sex couples who travel to a state that allows gay marriage are having an increasingly hard time getting a divorce in their home state. For example, let's say a couple from Utah traveled to California to get married. After a few years of marriage they decide to proceed with a divorce. The couple would not be allowed to legally obtain a divorce in Utah, where they are residents. This is because Utah does not recognize same sex marriages.
Same sex couples face additional headaches during the divorce process. Federal benefits, along with individual pensions, are often taxed in same sex divorces, but not in heterosexual ones. Divorce inequality in New York State is even more apparent when it comes to the division of property or assets. If same sex partners were together for many years and acquired a great deal of assets prior to marriage, the assets would not be divided evenly. In a heterosexual divorce, these assets would be considered marital property and they would be distributed equitably. The opposite is true for same sex marriages.
In very rare instances, however, courts will grant a divorce to a same sex couple, even if gay marriage is not legally recognized by their government. This past Monday, December 9th, a judge in Tel Aviv, Israel, granted an unnamed gay couple a divorce. The unnamed couple, who are residents of Tel Aviv, were married at an undisclosed location (the exact details surrounding the case are being kept private).
Some gay marriage advocates believe that this ruling is a positive step for Israel, a country where same sex marriage is illegal. However, some disagree. Even though the court ruled in favor of the divorce, it did not recognize the fact that the marriage was between two people of the same gender. The Jerusalem Post reported that the family court in Tel Aviv granted the divorce based on a "declarative order", which allowed the couple's names to be stricken from the Registrar.
Regardless of where you are filing, same sex couples face more challenges when trying to get a divorce. States that support marriage equality still have many issues and hurdles that same sex couples need to overcome before they can be granted a Judgment of Divorce. This is why it is in your best interest to contact an experienced matrimonial attorney who specializes in same sex divorce. Brian D. Perskin & Associates has represented many same sex couples, and the staff fully understands the difficulties involved with these unique cases. Schedule your free consultation today by calling (646) 760-1428 or (718) 875-7584 today!