In an historic decision issued on June 26, 2015 the United States Supreme Court ruled in Obergefell v. Hodges (PDF)  that same sex couples have the right to be married in every state and that all states must recognize validly performed same sex marriages.

Although we have had marriage equality in New York State since 2011 and the Windsor (PDF) decision in 2013 required the federal government to recognize same-sex  marriages by declaring the Defense of Marriage Act, known as DOMA unconstitutional,  this decision has had and will have an enormous impact for same sex couples throughout the country.   We are available to discuss what marriage equality means for you and how we can help you and your family (no matter how you define it or what it looks like) prepare for the future. 

The leading LGBT organizations (American Civil Liberties Union, Freedom to Marry, Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders, Human Rights Campaign, Lambda Legal and National Center for Lesbian Rights) have published a very useful list of Frequently Asked Questions.

While this important landmark decision has opened the door for marriage for all same sex couples who choose to marry, there are still many unresolved issues.  One of the chief concerns is whether a second parent or step parent adoption is still necessary for couples who have or plan to have children.  Even with marriage equality, there may be significant risk of loss of parental rights for non-biological or so called non “legal” parents.   Please contact us with any particular questions or concerns about what this decision means for you if you are parents or are thinking about having a child.  If you are considering  getting married, please call us to discuss a prenuptial agreement or to understand better what it means in a legal sense to marry.  

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