Seattle Same Sex Divorce Attorney
If you’re looking for an LGTBQ+ally attorney in Seattle, Zafiro Law is the law firm to contact. Led by Seattle same-sex divorce attorney Katrina Zafiro, we understand the unique needs of LGTBQ+ clients during divorce and can provide the help they need to make the entire process a success.
Why Zafiro Law?
Let’s face it – Zafiro Law is not the only family law firm serving King and Snohomish counties in Washington, but we have an entirely different approach to such matters. When you need to speak with a compassionate, respectful, trustworthy LGTBQ+ ally lawyer in Seattle, we are the law firm to contact.
As one of the well-respected family law firms in the region, we strongly believe in advocating for our client’s rights. We believe that our client’s interests come first and are always ready to help them navigate complex legal processes to protect their interests.
How Do I Navigate a Same-Sex Divorce?
Same-sex marriages became legal in Washington state on February 13, 2012, when the then Governor Christine Gregoire signed legislation establishing full marriage rights for same-sex couples in this state. If you and your same-sex spouse are considering divorce, here’s everything you need to know about navigating such a divorce in Washington.
Residency plays an integral role in determining subject matter jurisdiction in a same-sex divorce. Washington doesn’t have any specific residency requirements for marriage. However, if you want to file for divorce in this state, at least one spouse of the divorcing couple must be a resident.
More specifically, one spouse must live in Washington and intend to make their residence their home. If you’re in a same-sex marriage or any other type of legal marriage, you can establish Washington residency by:
- obtaining a Washington state driver’s license;
- registering as a voter in Washington (if you’re an American citizen);
- opening a Washington state bank account;
- buying or maintaining a residential property in Washington; or
- moving to Washington for employment-related reasons.
However, suppose you or your spouse is actively serving in the military. In that case, you can establish residency in Washington state if you live in the state for at least three months after filing and serving the divorce paperwork.
When filing for a same-sex divorce in Washington, the Petitioner (the individual filing for divorce) doesn’t need to explain, in detail, why they’re filing for divorce. Instead, they can cite the state’s only no-fault reason for divorce – the irretrievable breakdown of the marriage. This simply means the marriage is broken beyond repair and divorce is the only remaining option.
If the other partner doesn’t dispute the divorce, upon a party’s request, the court can issue a final divorce decree 90 days after the official service of summons. On the contrary, if the other party disputes the divorce petition, the court will consider other reasons for the divorce. Ultimately, the divorce might be decided by a family court or a superior court.
If the same-sex couple has a child, the court will require that they submit a proposed Parenting Plan. The Plan must contain detailed information about how the divorcing parents will take care of the child’s needs.
Washington courts always prioritize the child’s best interests in a divorce proceeding. For this reason, you must create a Parenting Plan that is focused on the child or children. If you need help creating such a plan or understanding the complex laws surrounding this process, contact Zafiro Law – we might be able to help.
It’s also important to understand Washington state’s child support laws. This will help you plan your finances if you’re the spouse paying child support. Conversely, if you’re the spouse expecting child support, understanding these laws will help you realize what your child might be entitled to.
In Washington, the minimum amount a parent can pay as child support is $50. The maximum amount can be any amount just as long as it’s not more than 45% of the parent’s net income. So, for example, if the parent’s monthly net income is $4,000, child support cannot be more than $1800 for such an income. This only applies if the state of Washington has jurisdiction over that particular child support case.
Does the Washington State Divorce Process Differ for Same-Sex Couples?
Washington state treats same-same marriages the same as heterosexual marriages. For this reason, the state’s divorce process is the same for both types of marriages. However, regardless of the type of marriage, divorce processes in Washington state are complex.
For example, there’s little support offered to same-sex couples during a divorce. Like any other couple going through a divorce, same-sex couples need support at different levels. The ideal support may be in the form of legal advice, therapy, counseling, etc.
It’s not uncommon for same-sex couples going through divorce to avoid their families, friends, or even colleagues during such difficult times. If that’s what you’re going through currently, you can count on Zafiro Law for the support and legal advice you need to navigate the complex divorce process.
How a Seattle Same-Sex Divorce Attorney Can Help
We live in a judgemental society. The last thing you want is to work with individuals who won’t take your matter seriously because you have a different sexual orientation. Instead, you need a an experienced divorce attorney who understands and is passionate about protecting your best interests during divorce.
Whether it’s about child support, division of property, or anything in between, Seattle same-sex divorce attorney Katrina Zafiro and her team might be able to help. We’ve been serving residents of King Country, including the cities of Kirkland, Bellevue, Shoreline, Renton, Kent, Issaquah, Mercer Island, Redmond, and Sammamish, since 2006. We also provide legal representation for clients in various towns across Snohomish county, such as Mountlake Terrace, Lake Forest Park, Bothell, Mukilteo, Mill Creek, Edmonds, and their surroundings.
All you have to do is call us at 206-309-9645 for a consultation. You can also drop us a message online, and one of our legal representatives will get in touch to discuss your case.