Annapolis Same-Sex Child Custody Lawyers Find Workable Solutions

Trusted Maryland divorce lawyers helping LGBTQ individuals with child custody agreements

Divorce is already a cumbersome and emotionally taxing process, but for same-sex couples in Maryland who have children, there can be added complexity and stress. Though the laws are the same for LGBTQ and traditional families, certain challenges arise surrounding child custody, visitation, support, and access to their children.

If you are seeking trustworthy legal advice, you will want an Annapolis child custody attorney that offers comprehensive counsel to those seeking resolutions. At Cynthia H. Clark & Associates, LLC, clients enjoy the peace of mind that comes with choosing a team that is committed to protecting the rights and interests of all clients and their children.

Maryland custody issues in same-sex divorce

Second parent adoption is crucial in Maryland same-sex marriages
When a same-sex couple in Maryland has a child, it is imperative that the non-biological parent (or second parent) of the child adopt as soon as possible. A legal adoption ensures that a non-biological parent will be able to pursue custody and/or visitation rights, and will be able to petition the Court for support in the case of divorce. While the state of Maryland currently allows two female partners to be listed on a birth certificate, it does not grant the same right to men.

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Once both parents have adopted the child or children and established legal parentage, Maryland child custody laws follow regular order. Legal custody gives parents the right to make major decisions on behalf of their child—including decisions about schooling, religion, and medical care. Physical custody governs where children reside.

The courts divide these orders in two ways:

  • Sole custody. One parent is granted sole legal and/or physical custody of the child. Courts are not likely to grant sole physical custody to one parent and sole legal custody to the other. In many cases, the parent will be granted sole physical AND legal custody, or some combination of sole and joint custody.
  • Joint/shared custody. Parents share the responsibilities of legal and physical custody, though one parent’s opinion may be weighted in cases where the parents disagree.

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