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September 29, 2020

Amicable Property Division in Same-Sex Divorces

Many same-sex couples may have chosen to marry long before 2014 if it had been an option in Illinois. So, even though many have been officially married in the state since then, they may consider their established relationship to have started years before.

In a divorce, the date the marriage began determines many property division issues, as marital property is usually anything that either spouse has acquired since then. A same-sex couple who wants to divorce amicably may want to discuss a date that both spouses see as fair.

The Date of Cohabitation

Moving in together is a milestone that often marks the beginning of serious commitment. A couple who chose that date might consider assets owned before cohabitation as separate property, and those obtained after as marital property.

The Date of The Wedding

A couple may have married in one of the states that recognized same-sex marriage before Illinois. That would be a logical date to choose for property division purposes, although if the couple were to take their divorce to court, either of the spouses may dispute that date.

The Date of The Marriage in Illinois

If the spouses mutually agree to divide their property based on the date on their Illinois marriage license, they may not have as much property to divide, particularly if they were careful to keep from commingling their separate property. Separate bank accounts and titles with only one name on them may make the division even simpler.

Regardless of the date, a willingness on both sides to negotiate may keep the process amicable.

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Judith Trentman Wilson, Attorney at Law, P.C. , The Villages, FL

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