Same-sex couples in Los Angeles County, California have the same rights and benefits as heterosexual couples when it comes to divorce. The process begins when one of the spouses (the petitioner) files an application to dissolve the marriage. This request must also be notified to the other spouse (the defendant). In California, child custody cases involving same-sex parents must be treated the same before the law as any other child custody case involving parents of the opposite sex.
When making a determination regarding child custody and visitation, courts will rely on Section 3011 of the California Family Code to determine a custody agreement that is in the best interest of the child. The California Supreme Court has expanded many of California's family codes related to child custody and visitation to include same-sex couples. If you are experiencing discrimination in the family court system because you are a same-sex parent, you should immediately contact an experienced family law attorney. You'll need to follow the steps above to legally get married in California. In some cases, having a legal domestic partnership and a legal marriage can provide a legal advantage.
As a same-sex partner, it can be helpful to move to another state. It can also help protect you when you travel to other states or countries. Consult a lawyer for advice regarding your particular situation. California law recognizes marriages entered into in other jurisdictions. Same-sex marriages performed before Proposition 8 went into effect are legally valid.
California law prohibits discrimination in housing on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, and marital status. Additionally, California law prohibits employment discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, and marital status. However, if your potential employer is a religious organization, the answer can be more complicated. If you think you experienced discrimination, contact a Pride Legal employment lawyer for advice. Certain exemptions may apply to religious organizations. California also prohibits adoption and foster care agencies from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.
If you're considering international adoption, keep in mind that many countries don't allow same-sex parents to adopt. Consult with a qualified gay adoption lawyer for legal advice. While the California Supreme Court cases did not change the California Family Code to include same-sex couples in the drafting of laws, the cases effectively changed the interpretation of the laws. If you're part of the LGBT community of the greater Los Angeles area and live with your partner, it's crucial to get legal assistance from a same-sex domestic partnership lawyer at the Gay Family Law Center. The experienced family law attorneys at Wallin & Klarich can help you complete all the necessary documents and appear in court on your behalf, to ensure that your case is argued as effectively as possible. A person's religious practice is protected by the First Amendment, and no California family law judge has the right to interfere with that practice in a family law case without convincing evidence that the child is in danger.
However, even if you can reach an agreement with the other parent, it's important that you seek the advice of an experienced family law attorney to ensure that your rights as a parent are protected in the agreement. The Gay Family Law Center has an unparalleled depth and breadth of knowledge in LGBT coexistence agreements. They specialize in helping LGBT couples navigate through complex family law matters such as divorce proceedings, child custody arrangements, adoption proceedings, prenuptial agreements, and more. If you're part of the LGBT community living in Los Angeles County and need legal assistance with any family law matter, contact an experienced family law attorney at Wallin & Klarich today. Our attorneys have decades of experience helping clients with their family law matters and will fight for your rights every step of the way.