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Orlando Family Law Attorneys > Orlando & Tampa LGBT Law

Orlando & Tampa LGBT Attorneys

The legal landscape for gay and lesbian individuals and couples has changed dramatically in recent years, most notably with the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2015 decision in Obergefell v. Hodges holding that same-sex couples have a fundamental right to marry guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution. Meanwhile, transgender individuals are standing up to claim their legal rights in education, the workplace, and public places. The Orlando & Tampa LGBT attorneys at Hancock & Associates, P.A. is dedicated to defending the rights of LGBT individuals and couples in marriage, divorce and adoption in Florida.

Marriage and Domestic Partnership in Florida

Although Florida law recognizes the right of same-sex couples to marry, following the U.S. Supreme Court’s announcement in 2015, the state still also has its domestic partnership law on the books. Couples who marry have different rights and legal status from domestic partners or those who simply cohabit without formalizing their relationship. When considering whether to enter into a legal union, or to live together in a long-term relationship without any formal legal sanction, it is important to understand the legal ramifications of each type of decision. At Hancock & Associates, we can help you understand your rights and provide advice about your options. We also negotiate, draft and review prenuptial agreements, cohabitation agreements and other martial agreements. These types of agreements can help both parties enter the relationship with open eyes, clear communication, and clear expectations of what would happen in the event of a divorce or breakup, particularly with regards to the distribution of property and the payment of support.

Adoption

Although a same-sex couple may be married, the biological child of one spouse is not recognized as the legal child of the other spouse, unless a formal adoption process is first completed. This second-parent adoption process is similar to the process for stepparent adoption in Florida. Second parent or stepparent adoption is not always easy and can be especially difficult if the other biological parent objects to the adoption. At Hancock & Associates, we guide you through every step of the process, including representation in courtroom hearings, to achieve full parental rights for both parents, a status which can be reflected on the birth certificate at the conclusion of adoption proceedings.

Our family law practice also includes helping LGBT individuals or couples adopt a child through DCF or private agency adoption. We can negotiate terms and prepare all necessary documents, and walk you through all the required steps so you know what to expect from agency interviews, parenting classes, the home study and more.

Divorce

Attorney Chris Hancock is an experienced Florida divorce lawyer who is skilled and knowledgeable regarding issues of property division, parenting and timesharing, alimony and child support as they may apply in the divorce of same-sex couples. We strive for an amicable resolution of issues in divorce, while also providing strong and effective representation in any litigation that may be necessary.

Estate planning

Whether married or unmarried, comprehensive estate planning with an attorney experienced in same/sex and LGBT legal issues is essential to making sure your spouse or partner is provided with the property you wish to give, and also has the decision-making authority for medical decisions, financial matters and other legal decisions. Our estate planning services include drafting the will according to your wishes, as well as other critical documents, including a designation of pre-need guardian, health care surrogate designation, and powers of attorney for financial and health care matters. We work with you to craft a plan that meets your personal needs and desires.

Call Hancock & Associates in Orlando & Tampa for Help with LGBT Legal Matters in Central Florida

For practical advice and professional representation from an Orlando LGBT Law Attorney who is knowledgeable and experienced in Florida LGBT legal matters, contact Hancock & Associates, P.A. at our offices in Orlando or Tampa by calling 407-894-0853.

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