With same-sex marriage ballot initiatives to be decided in four states on November 6 and new laws recently enacted or pending in others, Avvo, Inc., the web’s largest expert-only legal and health Q&A forum and directory, has released a set of legal guides that address the primary questions consumers have regarding same-sex marriage and same-sex divorce. The new guides, authored by attorneys with subject matter expertise, are available on Avvo.com, along with questions on same-sex marriage answered by attorneys from across the country, and include:
“With the rapidly changing legal landscape around same sex marriage, there is a lot of confusing and misleading information out there,” said Lisa Bloom, founder of The Bloom Firm, author of Think and Swagger, and legal analyst for Avvo.com. “Fortunately, consumers can get succinct, trustworthy information and fast answers to their questions from Avvo and its community of legal experts nationwide.”
Top Legal Questions Answered
In the past year, the number of questions asked on Avvo about laws related to same-sex marriage has increased significantly as laws across the country have changed. The most asked questions pertain to cross-state jurisdiction, immigration and divorce. Below are three examples of questions asked and answered by attorneys on Avvo.com:
Is gay marriage allowed in the U.S. between a citizen and non-citizen?
The Law: Same-sex marriage in the U.S. is not dependent on immigration status, however, Immigration Law does not recognize (yet) gay marriages for the purpose of immigration benefits.
My partner and I were married two years ago but she met someone else; how do we go about getting a divorce?
The Law: It depends on the state that you live in. A gay couple in Massachusetts, for example, is treated exactly the same way an opposite-sex couple is treated. When both parties to the divorce can agree on each and every term of their separation, the parties may file what is called a “joint petition for divorce”.
We were married in Massachusetts but we live in North Carolina, are we still married?
The Law: Same-sex couples can currently marry in six states and the District of Columbia, and there’s no residency requirement to marry. DOMA, the “Defense of Marriage Act” is a federal law that enables states not to recognize same-sex marriages entered into in other states. As such, North Carolina does not recognize same-sex marriages from other states, and as long as DOMA remains the law, it will not be required to do so.
In Avvo’s free Q&A forum with more than 125,000 participating lawyers, doctors and dentists, consumers can ask a lawyer or ask a medical professional questions for free. Avvo’s professional directory provides comprehensive profiles, client and patient reviews, peer endorsements and the industry-recognized Avvo Rating for more than 90 percent of lawyers, doctors and dentists in the U.S. Avvo launched in 2007 and is privately held with funding from Benchmark Capital, DAG Ventures and Ignition Partners.
Source: Avvo, Inc.