Same Sex Divorce Lawyer

Attorney Heath M. Ward

While the state of Massachusetts has been a leader on same-sex marriage, this does not mean that same-sex divorce in Cape Cod isn’t without complications. To be sure, while gay couples have the same rights to marry and divorce as do straight couples, certain issues–such as dividing property or determining a fair alimony amount–can be difficult to navigate, especially if the couple wanted to marry but was prohibited from doing so before the law changed. Additionally, issues of child custody may be complicated if only one parent is the child’s biological or legal parent.

At the Law Office of Heather M. Ward, our Cape Cod gay divorce lawyer is here to provide you with the support and attention you need when you are navigating your divorce case. Please call today for the help you can trust.

“I would highly recommend Heather Ward for any of your family law needs. She successfully represented me in my divorce which was an awful experience to go through but her compassion, responsiveness and caring advice, helped me through the ordeal. Being a businesswoman myself, I really appreciated how she kept me informed every step of the way and welcomed my input on all the legal documents that had to be filed.”

– Maryann

What’s Different in a Gay Divorce on Cape Cod?

If you are getting a divorce and you are in a same-sex marriage, the basics of your divorce case will follow the same format as other divorces. For example, you’ll still need to file or respond to your divorce petition, resolve various issues in the divorce with your spouse, and head to court in divorce litigation if a settlement cannot be reached. That being said, there are some elements of a gay divorce case that may be different or more complex than a standard divorce. These include:

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Common Law Marriage is Not Recognized

First, it’s important to note that common law marriage–where a couple who is not married but lives together and recognizes each other as spouses–is not recognized in our state. 

For those who were living together as spouses before the law allowing for marriage passed in our state, or for those who chose not to marry for reasons related to family or societal factors, this may seem unfair when it comes to matters of alimony and property division. For example, consider a couple that has lived together for the past 20 years, but didn’t marry until five years ago. Should an alimony award be based on the 20 years of life together, or only the past five? What about property acquired during the relationship 15 years ago vs. three years ago? These are tough questions that require the assistance of an attorney to navigate. You’ll want a lawyer on your side advocating for you.

Determining Child Custody May Be More Complicated

The other issue that is particularly convoluted in gay divorce is that of child custody. If a child is not the biological child of both parents, or if both parents have not established legal parental rights (through adoption), then only one parent in the marriage may actually have the right to seek custody of a child. This can be a heartbreaking reality for the other, who raised the child. For this reason, it’s very important to establish parental rights as early on in a child’s life as possible. Please call our lawyer if you need help doing this, or if you are getting a divorce and are wondering how your parental rights will be implicated.

Call Our Cape Cod Gay Divorce Attorney Today

All divorce cases are best navigated with the support of an attorney. If you have an especially complex divorce case, don’t hesitate to contact Attorney Heather M. Ward. You can reach our Cape Cod gay divorce lawyer by phone at (617) 903-8955, or by sending our law firm a message directly at your convenience.

How to Get Started

To start the process of filing for divorce or learning more about your divorce options, call the office of Heather Ward Law directly at (617) 903-8955 today or send us a message telling us more about how we can be of service. Heather will help with your same sex divorce and will work hard for you.

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Call Attorney Heather Ward today to find out how she can help you!