Sunday, July 07, 2013
Divorce in for same-sex married couples will often be nettlesom
Margaret Klaw, of Berner, Klaw and Watson, has an interesting warning about gay divorce in the Sunday Washington Post, here.
If you traveled to a state that allowed gay marriage (New York) but it wasn’t recognized in the state you live, you can’t divorce in that state. And in fact, you can’t get divorced in New York unless at least one partner lives there. A few states (California, New York) do make exceptions for same-sex couples that live there.
Klaw predicts that eventually, the Supreme Court will hold that states can’t ban same-sex marriage, or refuse to recognize other states’ marriages, following the precedent for interracial couples. (That latter concept gets more nebulous all the time; as a matter of anthropology and genetic science, technically we are all “black”; there seems to be only a minor difference in the ability to handle ultraviolet light and make Vitamin D.) The Court’s rulings, though, don’t necessarily point that way; the “full faith and credit” exemptions in DOMA remained intact for now.
Legally married gay couples may also learn that sometimes there is a “marriage penalty”.