Same-Sex Couples Starry-eyed in Wanting Marriage Equality?

By: Carol Ann Mazza Date Posted: April 27, 201510:49 pm

I recently attended a seminar in which one of the presenters spoke about the future of Florida family law and, of course, the discussion turned to one of the most actively and quickly changing areas of family law:  marriage equality and the laws regarding same-sex marriage.  All over the country, states are legalizing same-sex marriage and same-sex couples are finally getting the legal recognition they deserve.

Legal recognition of same-sex marriage comes with both the good and bad.  The benefits that opposite-sex couples enjoy by virtue of their marriages will be enjoyed by same-sex couples, too.  On the flip side, laws that apply to dissolutions of opposite-sex marriages, such as equitable distribution, alimony, parental rights, etc., will also apply to same-sex marriages.  Sometimes the laws are favorable and sometimes they are not; as they are applied by a court may be viewed positively or negatively, depending upon how the laws are applied and how each person is affected.

The speaker described same-sex couples as “starry-eyed” in their desire for marriage equality, in almost a “watch what you wish for” sentiment.  The speaker seemed to be implying that same-sex couples don’t realize they will be subject to laws that may or may not work for them.  

Do same-sex couples know they will be subject to laws that dictate how their marriages potentially are dissolved?  That dictate how their assets will be divided, how their income will be spent and how their children will be raised?  Maybe.  Maybe not.  Does that make the desire for legal recognition and marriage equality less desirable?  I would guess the answer is a resounding NO!