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Same-Sex Marriage Lawyers in Boca Raton

Palm Beach County Family Law Attorneys

Federal law has given same-sex couples the same rights that heterosexual couples have always had – the right to marry, enter into premarital agreements, adopt children, have children through the use of surrogates, and name each other as beneficiaries of retirement plans.

With these rights, however, come a myriad of potential problems. At Feldman & Schneiderman, our Boca Raton family law attorneys can advise you concerning your family law and inheritance rights and liabilities in the event you wish to marry. We can help you prepare premarital (prenuptial) agreements as a means to define your rights and responsibilities after marriage.

Child Custody in Same-Sex Marriage

A major potential problem exists in same-sex marriages that does not exist in heterosexual marriages – ensuring both parties have legal rights to custody and timesharing with their children. A same-sex couple may adopt children, but it is essential that adoption paperwork recognize both parties as adopting parents. If a couple adopts a child prior to marriage, the potential complications increase. What about couples who use a surrogate to deliver a child? Does it matter whether either spouse is the birth mother and, if so, how can the rights of the other spouse be protected after divorce? If neither is the birth parent, how can both spouses be protected?

Premarital agreements, adoption agreements and surrogacy agreements need to be drafted extremely carefully to protect both spouses in a same-sex marriage or else one party could find himself or herself in extensive and expensive litigation. There are Florida statutes that require strict compliance. An experienced attorney is necessary to ensure that all the necessary documents and agreements are signed.

Divorce

The people of Florida should celebrate this milestone in civil rights. However, with marriage, sometimes comes divorce. Florida laws that govern divorce also apply to divorce when the couple is of the same sex.

Florida has a residency requirement to obtain a divorce. The divorce typically must be filed in the county where the parties last lived together as a married couple. The parties can agree to file elsewhere, but if they cannot agree, the county where the marriage was last “intact” is the proper county for filing for divorce.

In order to file for divorce in Florida:

  • One of the parties must be a resident of Florida for at least the six months immediately prior to filing for divorce
  • The spouse seeking divorce may file for the dissolution of marriage in the county where they last resided together.

Whatever legal assistance you need with a same-sex marriage, our Boca Raton family law attorneys can help. Call us today at (561) 531-5659.

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