Although Pennsylvania’s ban on same-sex marriage has been overturned, LGBT laws in the state are still developing.
Now that Pennsylvania and other states have started to recognize the legal rights of partners in same-sex marriages, new legislation must be created. Until then, complicated issues may arise when LGBT partner rights are compromised during a couple’s relationship.
This is why it is important for couples to find a LGBT lawyer in Philadelphia who has specific experience creating powers of attorney, establishing domestic partnerships, and handling the dissolution of domestic partnerships (the equivalent of LGBT divorce).
Navigating these matters with a Philadelphia lawyer experienced in LGBT partner rights ensures that your best interests and rights are protected. Consider the potential life changes a long-term committed relationship brings: Purchasing a home, health problems, growing a family, debt, planning for retirement. Each of these shifts in lifestyle could strip a partner of their rights without guidance from a Philadelphia LGBT lawyer:
- LGBT attorneys prepare domestic partnerships. These legally binding documents are the only comprehensive way to protect LGBT partner rights in Pennsylvania. They will often include powers of attorney, important documents that detail the authorities of each partner concerning financial, medical and other decisions in the event a partner becomes incapacitated. Employer- provided benefits may be available to your partner under domestic partnerships. LGBT couples can also authorize beneficiary designations on retirement accounts to ensure the entitlements of both partners. What if your power of attorney was not prepared properly? In the event of an emergency, your rights are compromised. A Philadelphia LGBT lawyer will make certain the documents are accurate and fully executed.
- A child is a life-changing commitment. The adoption process itself is a commitment. LGBT couples spend significant amounts of time researching adoptions in Pennsylvania when they could make time with our LGBT lawyers and learn everything they need to know right away.
- Great detail and care must be made when a couple forms a joint commitment. The merging of assets should be reviewed by a LGBT lawyer. Should one or both partners decide to move on with separate lives, even greater detail and care must be made for the dissolution of domestic partnerships in Pennsylvania.
These are not simple areas of law where a DIY kit will resolve all issues. Special attention from a LGBT lawyer is needed.
The terms of the dissolution will have long-term effects on both partners, which could be restricting if not reviewed by an attorney. Exercise your rights and enjoy freedoms you are entitled to by working with a Pennsylvania attorney with LGBT law experience.