Family structures have changed dramatically in the last several decades. Now, households are managed by single parents or same-sex couples and include blended families who may have siblings, half-siblings, step-siblings, and/or adopted children.
While same-sex marriage was only recently legalized at the federal level, the truth is that LGBTQ couples face many of the same challenges and hardships as anyone else in a marriage. When complex family issues regarding divorce or child custody arise, you may find yourself in need of a qualified family law attorney.
You will want a diverse law firm with attorneys who understand the unique challenges you face, attorneys who have the legal knowledge and experience to help you weather the storm and reach a positive outcome. You need lawyers who feel strongly about inclusivity and who will put you at ease throughout the process.
Here are a few things to consider when seeking family law attorneys who welcome LGBTQ clients.
The Importance of Inclusivity in Family Law
Regardless of your gender identity, sexual orientation, or family situation, there may come a time when you need the services of family law professionals. Members of the LGBTQ community are not strangers to family disputes, issues related to marriage and divorce, debates over custody arrangements, and all of the same problems that plague any other couple.
Some LGBTQ couples may also face additional hurdles, from issues related to transgender name changes to the difficulties of adoption. This is where an experienced family law firm can help. Even if a firm does not offer the specific service you need, they will be able to refer you to organizations that can help you.
When you reach out to a family law firm that explicitly promotes inclusivity, you can feel comfortable and confident in knowing that you will receive the compassion and support that you expect and deserve.
Services Offered by a Family Law Attorney
What types of services can you expect when you seek out LGBTQ family law services? Family law firms generally focus on areas like:
- Prenuptial and Postnuptial agreements; and,
- Separations and divorce; and,
- Alimony and equitable distribution; and,
- Child custody, visitation, and child support.
Family law firms can also help with issues like relocation or modifying existing agreements or court orders if circumstances have changed. Whether you are struggling through a contentious divorce, dealing with complicated financial custody issues, or you need help with a DSS defense, the right family law firm can provide the advice and legal services that will ensure the best possible outcome.
Mediation and Arbitration
In South Carolina, mediation is an integral part of family law cases. It is mandatory before a final hearing can be scheduled. For this reason, it is a good idea to seek a firm with family law attorneys who are experienced family court mediators.
If you are looking to avoid a lengthy and expensive court battle, mediation may help you reach a resolution. If you and your partner cannot reach an agreement your case may be able to be resolved by a certified arbitrator.
Finding the Right Family Law Attorney in Charleston
Even with the shift in societal sentiment and state and federal laws towards recognition of LGBTQ rights, it can be nerve-wracking to approach legal professionals about family law issues. It is so important to find a family law firm that is dedicated to inclusivity and understanding LGBTQ rights.
The Bleecker Law Firm is committed to treating every client with the compassion and dignity they deserve, whether they are facing a simple divorce or a complicated custody case. Contact us today at 843-571-2725 or schedule a consultation to find out what we can do for you.