Study sheds light on same-sex marriage and divorce trends

The right to marry is one that many individuals in heterosexual relationships take for granted. However, until very recently, individuals involved in same-sex relationships could only dream of one day being able to marry a partner.

Today in the U.S., gay and lesbian couples are able to legally marry in 35 states. It's also likely that gay marriage bans in several other states will eventually be completely struck down thereby affording tens of thousands more same-sex couples the legal right to marry.

For the same-sex couples who married after such bans were lifted, many had been in committed and long-term relationships. Additionally, due to previous legal restrictions, same-sex couples who married in the U.S. have only been married for a relatively short period of time. These combined factors likely help account for the results of a recent study conducted by researchers at UCLA’s The Williams Institute on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Law and Public Policy which reports divorce rates among same-sex couples are lower than among heterosexual couples.

Additionally, researchers also found that lesbian couples make up the majority of those same-sex couples who are now choosing to legally marry. When comparing data from 10 states where same-sex marriage is now legal, 62 percent of marriages were between females.

Same-sex couples who do subsequently divorce would be wise to turn to a divorce attorney who handles same-sex divorce and family law matters. In addition to concerns over the division of assets and property, when it comes to same-sex parents, issues related to child custody can be especially challenging. This is especially true in lesbian divorce cases where one parent is biologically related to a child and the other parent failed to take action to legally adopt a child.

Source: The Huffingto Post, "Same-Sex Couples Less Likely To Divorce Than Straight Couples, Williams Institute Research Finds," Curtis M. Wong, Dec. 15, 2014