Edward R. Weinstein, Esq.Edward R. Weinstein, Esq.

East Brunswick Same Sex Divorce Lawyer

When going through a divorce, two people in a same sex marriage should contact an East Brunswick same-sex divorce lawyer that has handled many cases involving LGBT couples.

The law of gay marriage has evolved dramatically since 1996. A same sex couple contemplating a divorce in New Jersey needs an attorney who has experience in the dissolution of a same sex marriage.

Consult with an experienced same sex divorce lawyer in East Brunswick to begin the process of filing for divorce. An attorney can put together the elements of the claim to help ensure a successful outcome on your behalf.

Benefits of a Prenuptial Agreement

One of the benefits of a prenuptial agreement is that it gives both parties an idea of how things are going to work out should the marriage be dissolved. That assumes that neither of the parties contests the prenuptial agreement in the event of a divorce.

Another benefit of a prenuptial agreement is that it is a way to protect the children from other marriages to be sure they are protected with respect to premarital assets and so forth.

Benefits of a Postnuptial Agreement

The benefit of a postnuptial agreement is that both parties know where they stand if the same sex marriage ends in a divorce.

To understand the similarities and differences between a prenuptial agreement and a postnuptial agreement, an individual should contact a same sex divorce attorney in East Brunswick as soon as possible.

Divorce Litigation

Same sex divorces are handled in the same manner as any other marriage. The complaint for divorce is filed in the Family Division of the New Jersey Courts in Middlesex County at the superior court level. It is treated like any other divorce matter.

Potential Complications

The most common complication with respect to assets and liabilities involves premarital assets. For example, one spouse owns a house for 10 years in their name alone and they get married, move their spouse in, and the couple lives there for another 10 years. Then a divorce occurs.

The dispute is whether the spouse has a claim since their name was never put on the deed and the house was premarital 10 years. The house is an asset that is typically exempt because it is premarital.

An East Brunswick same sex divorce lawyer or the spouse who is not named on the deed has an excellent argument that they have an equitable claim.

Divorce court in New Jersey is a court of equity and fairness. Consequently, that person has a claim even though they are not on the deed. To put it differently, the spouse whose name is on the deed of the house in question cannot sell that house without the spouse signing off on the paperwork at the closing.

Even though their name is not on the deed, a title company will never write insurance when there is a potential outstanding claim because that spouse has a claim.

Another example is when one of the two parties receives a sizable inheritance. If the spouse misuses the money and a divorce action occurs, the spouse may be required to pay the money back.

A same sex divorce attorney in East Brunswick can argue that the money was inherited and was a large amount and it is not fair that the other spouse spent the money unwisely.

Custody Arrangements

There are not many unique complications in a same sex divorce that are not found in any other divorce. However, there are a few complications that can arise under this type of scenario.

The first question that the East Brunswick same sex divorce attorney will ask is whether the non-biological parent legally adopted the child or children. If the answer is yes, they have the same standing and footing as any other parent. They are the legal parent of the child.

However, when there was no adoption, the analysis shifts to a best interest evaluation, the best interest of the child. As an example, two people get married, one has a child, and there is no adoption by the other spouse.

If these parties are together for a short amount of time and the child is not emotionally attached to the other spouse, that spouse would have a lesser claim or perhaps no claim to custody or parenting time with the child.

Another example is when the parties were together for 15 years, for example, and the child considers the non-biological parent to be their parent. They might call the other spouse mom or dad and feel supported by the non-biological spouse. Legally in a courtroom, that is a case of in loco parentis, which is Latin for “in place of a parent.”

The court considers whether the child would be harmed by removing someone they are emotionally attached to from their life. If the child deems the non-biological spouse as their parent, removing them from the child's life can be so devastating that the spouse has a good claim for parenting time and potentially custody, depending on the facts.

The focus of the judge in the family court of the Superior Court of New Jersey is always the best interest of the child. If it would harm the child by taking the non-biological parent out of the child's life, that is not going to happen. An individual can best understand this process by consulting a same sex divorce lawyer in East Brunswick.

Benefit of Experienced Counsel

When hiring an attorney, an individual should seek a lawyer that has experience in handling divorce matters. If the person’s time with the child and the welfare of the child come into question, an experienced East Brunswick same sex divorce attorney who understands the situation can obtain the best result for their client.

Divorces in New Jersey are geared for settlements. There are numerous events such as an early settlement panel and mediation that are part of the litigation process with the hope of resolving the case short of a trial. Only about two percent of all divorce cases in the State of New Jersey go to trial.