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Divorce of same-sex couple validated by Texas court

Same-sex couples in New Jersey enjoy the right to state-sanctioned marriage, but those same marriages may face legal challenges should the couple move. A same-sex divorce in Texas highlights the problem even as the state failed to prevent the procession of the divorce. The final decision, handed down by the Texas Supreme Court, took four years, which could feel like an eternity for a same-sex separation involving conflict, property division and child custody issues.

The couple from Massachusetts was seeking divorce before a Texas judge when the attorney general intervened to block proceedings. Greg Abbott, who is now the governor, claimed that Texas could not issue a divorce to the same-sex couple due to the constitutional ban on recognition of a same-sex marriage.

The Texas Supreme Court disregarded the state's argument in this legal dispute and ruled that the state simply had no standing to intervene in the case. This final ruling came four years after the initial motion to block by Abbott. The current attorney general has voiced the same position as his predecessor. It was unclear whether the couple faced serious problems regarding child custody or property division due to the delay.

Same-sex marriage partners may soon find their concerns over state recognition allayed by U.S. Supreme Court ruling, but they may still face trouble in the meantime. Regardless of the gender of the parties, divorces often include the same negotiations and conflicts concerning child support, custody and property division. An attorney with experience practicing family law may offer guidance in navigating the laws around civil unions, filing for separation and bringing the legal issues of divorce to a satisfactory conclusion.

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