SAME-SEX FAMILY LAW
Difficulties For Divorcing Same-Sex Couples
Same-sex family law is an evolving field — although, in most matters, same-sex couples are now on equal legal footing with their straight counterparts. Nevertheless, gay and lesbian couples still face difficulties in family law matters, particularly in divorce considerations that involve children.
Beth M. Terry is an attorney dedicated to practicing family law. Serving in Jacksonville and throughout northeastern Florida, she has more than 20 years' experience in the field. Beth guides her clients through the legal nuances, and helps them circumvent the most common mistakes. Whether through negotiation, mediation or litigation, she works rigorously to achieve favorable outcomes on behalf of those she represents.
Complications Involving Children
Divorce laws are largely identical across the demographic board. Same-sex couples face no unusual restrictions in concerns stemming from asset division or spousal support. Such disputes may not be pleasant, but there are, at least, no special difficulties.
When a same-sex couple has children, however, matters can become complex. While Florida law grants equal rights to birth parents and adoptive parents, it does not recognize that a spouse can be central to a child's upbringing even if adoption was not formally enacted. What this means is that it is extremely difficult for the nonbiological parent to establish custody and visitation rights.
Our firm can help in such situations. We can advocate the importance of the non-custodial parent's role in the child's life, and help convey that continuing the relationship is in the child's best interest. We seek, in every case, to maintain the integrity of a family, even when a divorce requires the overall dynamics to change.