Legal and Financial Considerations for Same-Sex Couples in Southern California

California’s legalization of same-sex marriage in 2013, followed by the national legalization in 2015, opened up a new set of exciting possibilities for same-sex couples, many of whom had been waiting to get married for years or even decades. Marriage affords some financial advantages but also may present some drawbacks depending upon your situation. The Oregonian recently published a helpful article on some of the effects of marriage on same-sex couples.

Advantages of Marriage

The benefits of marriage for same-sex couples include visitation and other legal rights that were previously unavailable, like end-of-life decision-making. Other benefits include access to spousal healthcare programs through employers and an unlimited ceiling on tax-free gifting, both of which offer the possibility of a significant financial boon to couples.

Potential Financial Pitfalls for Married Couples

At the same time, there are some potential financial drawbacks to consider before you walk down the aisle. The addition of a higher-earning spouse’s income could affect your ability to qualify for government benefits such as Social Security, disability, or welfare. It could also eliminate your ability to contribute to income-based financial tools like a Roth IRA.

Other Options for Same-Sex Couples

One option for couples who might find marriage detrimental to finances is domestic partnership. The impacts of domestic partnerships differ on state and local levels; however, they generally afford couples similar rights when it comes to visitation, estates, and health insurance.

Family Law Attorney Services for Southern California

If you live in Southern California and are considering getting married or are dealing with other family law issues, Ernest A. Casacca Attorney at Law can provide experienced guidance to help you and your partner make the best decision for your future. With over 25 years of experience, Ernest A. Casacca helps his clients achieve their goals with personalized attention. Call (805) 466-5888 today to set up an initial consultation.

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