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.
For example, one couple traveled to a different state to marry. Unfortunately, three years later, they decided to end their marriage, but they currently live in a state that does not recognize same-sex marriages. As a result, a judge in that state has ruled that he has no jurisdiction to grant them a divorce.
Because some states have residency requirements regarding seeking a divorce, it may not be as simple as traveling from Texas to New Hampshire, for example, in order to seek a divorce in a state that recognizes their marriage. Fortunately, some states have loosened their residency requirements because of this exact scenario. But, while they can obtain a divorce this way, many states are reluctant or unwilling to determine issues regarding child custody for a couple residing in a different state.
This could also leave a same-sex couple with difficulties. Some people advise about the importance of adopting a non-biological child in a situation such as this. This will help smooth the path toward resolution in custody-related issues for same-sex couples.
While progress has been made and continues to be made every day, the irony of today’s legal situation is that some same-sex couples may have more difficulty obtaining the right to divorce than the right to marry. Some people in this situation say they feel as if they are invisible, or ignored, as they wait on the appeals process that could potentially give them the divorce that they want. However, there are experienced attorneys in Colorado who are willing to assist in such matters.
Source: ABC News, “Divorce Law out of Sync With Same-Sex Marriage”, Leanne Italie, Sept. 30, 2014