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As of June 1, 2014, Illinois law changed to allow same-sex couples to be legally married. This legal change is touted as a significant boon to Illinois, and has allowed many long-term partners to gain legal recognition. Of course no couple, same-sex or opposite-sex, enters a marriage with the intent of divorcing. However, divorce can happen amongst every type of married couple. Though same-sex couples can now get legally married and thus legally divorced, they still face unique challenges during the dissolution process.
Before the law was changed, same-sex partners did not have many of the benefits that accompany legal divorce. Now, same-sex spouses must meet the same legal requirements to get divorced as opposite-sex couples. To gain a same-sex divorce in Illinois, at least one spouse must have been a state resident for at least three months. Illinois permits both fault-based and no-fault divorce, as well. Deciding whether to file on either ground depends on your circumstances. The divorce process is different in every case, but ultimately only a judge can legally dissolve the marriage. If you are considering separating from your same-sex spouse in Illinois, it may be in your best interests to first speak with an attorney for help.
Same-Sex Family Law Issues
Financial issues are one of the most contentious disputes in any divorce. Dividing property and assets can turn a divorce matter into an all-out battle. Illinois law requires that property be divided using the legal standard of “equitable distribution.” Essentially, this means that each spouse receives a “fair” portion of marital property based on his or her monetary and non-monetary contributions to the marriage. This is one unique challenge that some same-sex couples may face. Marital property is the property and assets acquired during the marriage. However, what if a same-sex couple has only been married for a few months, but has been in a marriage-like relationship for years or even decades?
Another same-sex divorce issue surrounds child custody. If one spouse is not the child’s biological parent (or if both spouses are not the adoptive parents), how will custody be determined? Your child’s other parent may even use your non-biological or non-adoptive relationship with your child against you in a custody case.
Contact Experienced Hinsdale Same-Sex Divorce Lawyers
Such problems can be quite challenging, but are not impossible to resolve. The experienced DuPage County family law attorneys at Martoccio & Martoccio have experience creating innovative solutions for same-sex couples going through relationship dissolution. When you contact us, you can speak with an attorney that same day for free. Our lawyers will work closely with you, guiding you through the entire legal process. Call us today for more information.