Experienced Family Law Attorney Assists with Gay & Lesbian Divorce in Pennsylvania

Compassionate and comprehensive representation to dissolve your marriage

When the U.S. Supreme Court decided Obergfell v. Hodges in 2015, it held that the due process clause and the equal protection clause of the U.S. Constitution guaranteed a fundamental right for persons of the same sex to marry. That ruling placed same-sex marriage on an equal legal footing with traditional marriage. Therefore, courts cannot treat same-sex couples any differently in a court of law when they seek to enforce their marriage rights or dissolve their marriage. Matthew R. Zatko, Attorney at Law represents gay and lesbian clients in legal actions related to their same-sex marriage. I treat all clients with equal dignity in enforcing their rights under the law.

Asserting your rights throughout the divorce process

No matter how amicable the breakup, divorce is a difficult process whether your spouse is the same sex or the opposite sex, so it’s essential you’re represented by a skilled and compassionate advocate. In my practice, I draw on more than 15 years of family law experience to provide reliable, cost-effective representation. I offer a full range of services, including:

  • No-fault divorce
  • Uncontested divorce
  • Contested divorce
  • Divorce mediation

I address all of your concerns aggressively and work to deliver the best results possible in matters related to:

  • Alimony
  • Child custody and visitation
  • Child support
  • Equitable distribution of property

Divorce can be a stressful process due to emotional and financial uncertainty. I take decisive steps to secure your rights so you can move forward with confidence.

Special considerations for child custody in same-sex divorce

Because the laws governing parental rights have not caught up with the changes in marriage law, same-sex couples can find themselves in tenuous and difficult child custody situations.  In the case of lesbian relationships, one partner may conceive through a sperm donor and be the natural mother of the child. Her partner may believe she has parental rights by virtue of the marital relationship, but unless she has formally adopted the child, the court may refuse to enforce custody rights. Similarly, gay men who have a child with a surrogate must terminate the surrogate’s parental rights, and the partner who is not a biological parent must adopt the child.

If you have not taken steps to secure your parental rights, you must make a case that visitation or custody is in the best interests of the child. I litigate custody matters aggressively to obtain the best possible outcome for you and your child.

Talk to an experienced Somerset attorney about same-sex divorce

Same-sex couples are entitled to the full benefit of Pennsylvania divorce law.  Matthew R. Zatko, Attorney at Law enforces your rights and treats you with the dignity you deserve. Call today at 814-483-7075 or contact me online to schedule a consultation.