Suffolk County LGBTQ Family Law Attorney
LGBTQ Divorce & Family Lawyer in Bohemia, New York
It was not that long ago that many states across the country did not recognize same-sex marriage and would not recognize the union of the two spouses. Couples often traveled to other states in order to exchange their vows and make their marriage official. In 2011, the state of New York legalized gay marriage and divorce. Today, all 50 states recognize LGBTW marriage. They also recognize LGBTQ divorce. Similar to all other divorce cases, there are many matters within an LGBTQ divorce that are required to be taken care of. When facing these situations, it is important to retain the services of an experienced attorney who can guide you through the process. For skilled and compassionate services when it is needed most, contact Peter V. Mandi & Associates today.
LGBTQ Divorce Requirements
When LGBTQ couples within the state of New York wish to receive a divorce, they are required to meet certain requirements. For starters, there is a residential requirement that gives the court jurisdiction over the case. In New York, one or both spouses involved must have lived in the state for a minimum of two years. In addition to this, couples also need to cite valid grounds for their divorce. This can include the following:
- Irreconcilable differences for at least six months
The Process of LGBTQ Divorces
In order to begin the divorce, the couple is required to complete a Complaint for Divorce. The Complaint will include the grounds for divorce as well as any temporary relief. This can include the following:
- Spousal maintenance
- Legal fees
- Child support
- Child custody
If the divorce is contested, the proceedings will continue as normal. The couples will undergo the process of discovery, a compliance conference, pre-trial motions, and trial. The divorce will be finalized with a Judgment of Divorce, including any orders from the court regarding spousal maintenance, property distribution, and agreements regarding child support and child custody.
Protecting LGBTQ Parental Rights
The laws in regard to LGBTQ parents and child custody continue to evolve as time goes on. It is because of this that these situations can often prove to be difficult in a divorce. In many of these relationships, one of the partners may be the biological parent of the child in their family. If a divorce occurs without the second, non-biological parent formally adopting their child, this can create complications in a custody battle. It is important to work out a child custody and visitation agreement that allows both parents to have a close relationship with their child, as long as it is in the child’s best interest. That is why it is beneficial to have the assistance of a dedicated LGBTQ family law attorney during this time who can navigate these situations.
Not long ago, the state of New York held many barriers that made it difficult for LGBTQ couples to adopt or foster children. In 2010, the state enacted a law allowing them to jointly adopt a child together. While this is an exciting process, it can also be a long and confusing one. It is because of this that it is LGBTQ couples should retain the services of an attorney who can help walk them through this time and ensure the adoption of their child goes as smoothly as possible. This is the case for those seeking to adopt a child born to different parents, or one spouse is looking to become the adoptive parent of the partner’s biological child.
Determining Alimony in LGBTQ Divorces
In New York, there are different types of alimony that can be awarded in a divorce depending on the circumstances of the marriage. In many cases, it can be dependent upon the length of the marriage. In LGBTQ divorces, it is important to keep in mind when same-sex marriage became leal in New York. While the couple may have been together for over 20 years, their marriage may not be legally recognized for as long. The types of alimony that may be awarded in New York can include:
- Permanent alimony: This remains in effect either for life or there is a change in circumstances. The amount that is awarded is based on the length of the marriage. Marriages that last up to 15 years may be awarded for 15 to 30% of the duration. Between 16 and 20 years, the payments may be awarded for 30 to 50% of the duration. For marriages that last 20 years or more, it may be awarded between 35 to 50% of the duration.
- Rehabilitative alimony: If one spouse postpones their career to support their partner, this may be ordered so the dependent spouse can receive the education or training they need.
- Reimbursement alimony: If one spouse financially supports their partner while they were pursuing education or training, this alimony can reimburse them.
When spouses go who through a divorce or former spouses who need to settle a family law matter can work together, they may benefit from the process of mediation in order to complete reach conclusions regarding the matter. This takes place with the assistance of a neutral outside party who works as a mediator to help both parties through negotiations of their marital or family issues. This allows both parties to reach amicable resolutions without having a judge determine the future of these matters on their behalf.
LGBTQ Domestic Violence Cases
Many of the tactics used in LGBTQ domestic violence cases are the same as those of non-LGBTQ abusers. This can include physical and sexual violence, emotional and psychological abuse, social isolation, economic control, etc. While this is true, domestic violence within same-sex relationships does prove to be unique in some ways, as specific responses and resources may be necessary. It is critical that victims in these situations receive ounce of help they deserve to achieve safety, which is why an experienced attorney should be retained for assistance.
Contact our LGBTQ Divorce Attorney
LGBTQ spouses who are considering a divorce in the state of New York should come to Peter V. Mandi & Associates for a consultation regarding their case. Our firm is here to assist you through these difficult times in order to move towards a better future. Our supportive and committed attorneys work tirelessly to reach the best possible conclusions for your case. To speak with an attorney, contact Peter V. Mandi & Associates today.