One of the most dramatically altered areas of family law in Florida in the last few years is the area related to same-sex committed relationships. Of course, same-sex couples only obtained the right to marry in Florida with the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2015 ruling striking down same-sex marriage bans as unconstitutional. Before that time, these couples’ relationships had no recognition in Florida. Since that time, same-sex couples have been able both to marry and divorce in the Sunshine State. One thing that is true, whether you’re in an opposite- or same-sex relationship, is that if your non-spouse partner makes a promise to support you it helps to get it in writing. A knowledgeable Miami divorce attorney can help you as you address these and other family law issues.
The divorce of L.M. and P.C. was an example of a dispute over an alleged oral contract. The women lived together for a period of years before they married. Over the course of the relationship, each of the women executed estate planning documents that named the other as the beneficiary of her assets. According to P.C., though, the two partners generally kept their assets separate. While L.M. allegedly opened joint accounts, P.C. asserted that she was unaware of these accounts prior to the divorce. P.C.’s name was added to the deed and the mortgage on L.M.’s home, but that was done because the couple needed P.C.’s high credit score to get a better rate in refinancing the mortgage on that home.
The main point of contention in the women’s divorce was P.C.’s retirement. In the litigation, L.M. asked for one-half of P.C.’s pre-marital retirement earnings. L.M.’s arguments were that (contrary to P.C.’s assertion) they did pool their assets and that P.C. had promised that the couple would use her retirement “to fund their golden years.”