Same-Sex Divorce Attorney in Long Island
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Since 2011, the state of New York has allowed same-sex couples to marry and has also recognized same-sex unions made in other states. As is the case with marriage, however, not all unions work out. If you would like to file for a same-sex divorce, our Long Island same-sex divorce lawyers at Hedayati Law Group P.C. can assist you with the entire process. We have helped many same-sex couples through divorce and know how to address unique issues that same-sex couples face, such as in asset division and child custody and visitation matters. We can help you successfully resolve your case in or out of the courtroom.
Why Choose Our Long Island & New York City Divorce Lawyers?
As our client, you can benefit from what sets our divorce firm apart, such as:
150+ Years' Shared Legal Experience
Founder Chosen for Super Lawyers® Rising Stars
Competitive Attorney Fees
Strict Privacy for Your Divorce Matters
The same-sex divorce process is generally the same as a heterosexual divorce. But no matter how amicable your parting may be, divorce is still an emotionally draining process. We have a reputation for being compassionate and sensitive to the needs of our clients, which allows us to create results-driven strategies that are specially designed for their situation. You can trust in our honest and dedicated legal counsel, from beginning to end.
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Child Support After Same-Sex Divorce
Although New York has permitted same-sex marriage, and therefore same-sex divorce, for several years now, the concept is still relatively unexplored. The average length of a marriage, regardless of the sexes involved, is about eight years, which could explain why the rules of same-sex divorce have not surfaced too often just yet. In particular, child support can be a touchy subject and a tricky issue for divorcing same-sex spouses.
Historically, there has been a bias against men and women alike in calculating child support. Many cases conclude, whether it is stated or subconscious, with the father paying child support to the mother, operating under an unfair assumption that a man in the relationship has the stronger ability to provide. In same-sex divorces, this antiquated thinking is both challenged and entirely unfitting.
When it is time to calculate your child support payments, the court should consider:
- Both parents’ monthly gross income
- Daycare expenses
- Costs related to child’s healthcare
- Child’s accustomed standard of living
- Each parent’s shared portion of responsibility
- Child support obligations from past marriages
In the end, child support should not be a crippling burden to the payor but it should also not leave the payee and the child wanting for more. If you are uncertain with how the court will handle your same-sex divorce and child support agreements, you can attempt to draft one of your own with your ex-spouse. It is recommended that you enter discussions about child support, either in court or out, with the assistance of a Long Island divorce attorney by your side.
Child Custody Issues in Same-Sex Divorce
Same-sex spouses may both be considered legal parents of a child. This occurs when the child was jointly adopted, parentage action established a parent-child relationship with the non-biological parent, or the child was born into the marriage. If you and your ex are both considered legal parents of the child, the court should treat child custody just as it would for any other divorcing couple.
In many same-sex marriages, there exists only one legal parent. This scenario can arise from different reasons but, commonly, one spouse had a child from a previous relationship, formed a new same-sex marriage, and never gave adoption rights to their new same-sex spouse. As with other forms of marriage, the parent without legal parentage rights has little to no say in child custody proceedings during divorce. On the other hand, they often do not have any obligation to pay child support, either.
Additional Complications You May Encounter
Not all the complexities of same-sex divorce will stem directly from divorce agreements. Some are caused by state or federal tax laws and financial institutions that offer benefits to married couples and remove benefits upon divorce. For help understanding some of these additional complications, it is crucial that you work with a divorce lawyer that has years of experience navigating high-net-worth divorce cases, which often involve similar or identical financial concerns.
Same-sex couples could run into unique issues with:
- Alimony taxes
- Family home transfer
- Federal tax filings
- Marital settlement rewards
- Social Security benefits
Four Tips for Divorcing Same-Sex Couples
At Hedayati Law Group, P.C., our Long Island family law attorneys genuinely want to see you and your family comfortable at the end of your divorce or dispute. To this end, we would like to offer a few hints and tips same-sex couples, and really all couples divorcing, should keep in mind to try to keep the process amicable and relatively stress-free.
- Don’t be afraid: Admittedly, this is far easier said than done but it is important to work on pushing your fear of the unknown life ahead of you aside. No happy marriage has ended in divorce, so if the process has begun, you must have confidence that it is for the better.
- Keep it professional: The attorneys representing your ex and the judge presiding over the matter may be impersonal, or even callous when handling your same-sex divorce. Remember that this process is not personal to them; do not let your frustrations spill out on them. You can rely on our compassionate divorce lawyers when you need some moral support, though.
- Protect your values: Divorce is about give-and-take, literally when it comes to asset and debt division, but this does not equate to compromising your core values and best interests. Take care of yourself and your children; let your spouse worry about themselves because they assuredly are already.
- Be proud of your decision: Members of the LGBTQ+ community have only recently gained the right to marriage in all 50 states, and hardships are sure to continue as the years pass by. Try to remember as you divorce that even though it might feel negative now, you are exercising newfound rights that had to be fought for, and that is something to be a source of pride.
One-Stop-Shop for Your Divorce
Having high-quality legal representation right from the start can increase the chances that your same-sex divorce will be settled in a favorable and timely manner. Let us help you ensure that your rights will be protected, as well as your assets and custody rights. At our New York divorce law firm, we handle every legal matter under one roof—another great benefit to our clients. Our resources and our trial-tested insights could prove to be essential to your case.
Give us a call to discuss how we can help you with your same-sex divorce in Long Island, NY.