The legalization of gay marriage brought much joy and overdue validation to the LGBTQ community. In the years since the 2015 ruling, though, many of the couples who joyously married have found themselves facing divorce. The divorce rate among gay couples is not drastically different than that for straight couples, but there are some key differences that the former should take into consideration.
According to Time, both male and female same-sex couples outearn straight couples by a significant margin. Because divorce is an inherently financial matter, this means that gay couples should pay attention to the following financial and legal implications of ending their marriage.
1. Child support
In most states, along with the right to get married, came the right to adopt children. Some gay couples adopt while others raise biological children, but no matter how you have built your family, you should consider the financial implications of children in a divorce. If one spouse outearns another, it may be beneficial to consider petitioning for child support in order to maintain kids’ standard of living.
In addition to maintaining the standard of living that your kids have grown accustomed to, you will want to protect yourself from the stress of a major lifestyle transition as you enter singlehood again. To this end, if your spouse provided financial support throughout your marriage, you may pursue alimony either permanently or temporarily while you adjust to your new financial circumstances.
3. Property division
One of the most important concerns in any divorce is the fair and equitable division of property. If you have a prenuptial agreement in place, this may be a simple process. Without one, though, this can easily become a point of contention between divorcing spouses. Typically, each spouse should retain his or her own property, and the value of any shared marital property should be divided between the two individuals.