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Differences between gay and straight marriages

The landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision in June 2015 held that gay people in Georgia and across the country will have the right to marry if they so choose. In spite of how recent the decision is, there are still many legal hurdles that have yet to be overcome and fully determined.

In some states, same-sex married couples were barred from seeking a divorce because their marriage was not recognized in the state of their residence. Now, with same-sex marriage being recognized across the country, this problem may be eliminated. However, same-sex spouses are still waiting to receive some or all of the federal privileges that opposite-sex spouses are provided. The Supreme Court decision requires states to provide the same rights to same-sex spouses as they afford to opposite-sex couples.

Another issue that is likely to arise in same-sex divorces is child custody. Because only one of the parents of a same-sex couple may be the biological parent, state law may provide greater protections and recognition of this spouse's parental rights than the other, even if the other parent helped raise the child. Another issue is how to determine the rights of parents when sperm donors or egg donors have been involved.

Individuals who are concerned about their rights as part of a same-sex couple whose marriage is ending may wish to discuss these matters with a family law attorney. LGBT laws and rights are an ever-changing platform, and legal counsel who has experience with these matters might provide an insight on how courts will deal with these types of issues.

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