Before the Supreme Court ruling that made same-sex marriage legal in all states, many same-sex couples faced enormous difficulties when trying to legally establish lives together. Although prior to this ruling gay marriage was already legal in Colorado, couples who moved out of state then had to face the reality that their spouses were still not eligible for a wide array of benefits that other married couples enjoyed, including the right to divorce. Even now, same-sex couples continue to face added worries when they decide to end their marriages.
When the United States Supreme Court ruled that same-sex marriage is legal at the federal level and in all 50 states, same-sex couples gained more than just the right to marry -- they gained the right to divorce. Even after some states, including Colorado, legalized gay unions prior to the SCOTUS ruling, divorcing was less than straightforward for many same-sex couples. Although the path to legally ending these relationships is now clearer, some confusion may remain.
Several years before the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that same-sex marriage was constitutionally protected in all 50 states, Colorado had already legalized marriages between same-sex couples. The court ruling opened up the door for same-sex couples all across the country to enjoy the benefits of marriage, including federal tax breaks, access to injured or ill loved ones in the hospital and even divorce. However, opponents of the ruling recently proposed ballot measures to limit same-sex marriages in Colorado.
As the fight for gay and lesbian rights continues across the country, same-sex couples in Colorado now enjoy many of the same legal protections as their heterosexual counterparts. While married same-sex couples can now exercise the ability to make medical decisions in an emergency and to file for death benefits through the workers' compensation system, couples may need to consider additional protections before marrying. Although property division and even alimony are usually addressed during divorce or dissolution of marriage proceedings, taking extra steps to protect important assets can still be hugely beneficial.
Popular comedian and former host of "The View" Rosie O'Donnell left the show following announcements that she and her wife had decided to call it quits. Although this is the second divorce for O'Donnell, she reported that she felt quitting the show due to her most recent split was necessary to allow her to focus more on her family. As many other same-sex couples in Colorado do, O'Donnell and her wife had a prenuptial agreement.
Could sexual orientation play a role in the overall success of a marriage? A new study indicated that this may be so. The Williams Institute's most recent findings indicated that same-sex couples tend to divorce less than their straight counterparts.
With rights for gay and lesbian couples at the forefront of civil rights discussions across the United States, same-sex unions have been legalized in many of the fifty states. In Colorado, same-sex civil unions have been legal since 2013, and same-sex marriage was legalized in 2014. While this has presented a previously denied opportunity, many couples -- both same-sex and not -- appear to be abstaining from marriage altogether. When a couple chooses living together over marriage, cohabitation agreements can protect both parties' interests in the event of a divorce..
There have been great strides made in equal rights for the LGBT community over the course of the last decade. As a result, many states now allow same-sex couples to legally marry. However, many couples who decide to end a marriage are stuck in limbo if they live in a state that does not allow same-sex marriage. Those in Colorado who may have found themselves in a similar situation may have sympathy for those in such a situation.
The Colorado Civil Union Act has not been in effect for very long, but it's benefits are already helping many families. Partners who happen to be of the same gender can have a civil union and are now able to enjoy the same advantages that married heterosexual couples do. This also means that same-sex couples can pursue a dissolution of their union, more commonly known as a divorce. We here at Jolein A. Harro, PC are more than willing to assist couples of all kinds with this important process.
The quickly changing landscape of marriage across the United States may leave some people with questions. Those Colorado same-sex couples who choose to get married may be thinking of how they can now enjoy the many financial benefits of a legal union. What they may be less focused on is that they also have the same rights as their heterosexual counterparts if the marriage ends in divorce.