As same-sex couples await the United States Supreme Court’s ruling as to whether gays and lesbians will have the legal right to marry in the state of Michigan, as well as three other states, some fear that there will still be a good deal of upheaval on some levels. Ineke Mushovic, the executive director of Movement Advancement Project believes that if the Supreme Court rules in favor, it will still come down to the states themselves having to sort out various situations involving same-sex couples.
According to Mushovic, he feels that same-sex couples may find the situation worse in Michigan than in many other states. As an example, same-sex couples could still face huge issues with getting parental gender references off the birth certificates of their children. Michigan will also have to sort out whether the female spouse in a same-sex marriage will be considered the legally presumptive parent of her spouse’s child, should either one of them choose to become pregnant.
Getting a divorce if the happy union doesn’t work out in the long-term could also become an issue. There are still many rules that would need to be worked out for divorce proceedings. As an example, judges could refuse to hear cases if they don’t believe in same-sex marriages. Rulings could also be an issue, if one spouse has a private-employer health plan that doesn’t cover same-sex spouses, there might then be a question of whether the child of a couple would still be covered if only the other spouse is considered the legal mother or father of the child.
Same-sex couples facing family law issues may find it beneficial to seek counsel from an experienced family law attorney who could potentially advise them of their legal rights and how they may pertain to their case.
Source: USA Today, “Same-sex ruling will trigger next round of fights,” Todd Spangler, June 21, 2015