Gay Divorce: How the Collaborative Family Law Model Can Help Parting LGBT Couples

January 27, 2016

By Angie Bain, Family lawyer and partner, GoransonBain, Huffington Post, March 28, 2012.
One of the many unjust results of a state legal system that refuses to recognize and validate a same-sex marriage or civil union is the absence of a binding structure and system for dissolving a fractured same-sex couple. LGBT couples typically have many, if not all, of the same legal issues to confront. How is custody of their children shared? How is their shared property divided? Who must help to support whom when the union ends? As a practicing family lawyer who has been married for 36 years, I have often reflected on how legally imposed rules and structure can support and preserve a marriage. And those of us active in the legal world of family law are constantly reminded that “the law” significantly lags behind the realities of modern human society. When our college-age son came out as a proud gay man to his family, I became keenly interested in exploring ways a same-sex couple can strengthen their union by preparing for the worst: a dissolved union.