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Georgia: Same-Sex Marriage; Gay Marriage

Question: My spouse and I were married in California. We are a same-sex couple and after getting married in California I got transferred to Alpharetta, Georgia, by my company.

Things have not been good in the marriage for some time. My spouse drinks too much and she started gambling in a big way. I think she cheated on me after an office party with a co-worker at my company who looks like Taylor Swift. They were flirting and I think more happened. Then I noticed suspicious text messages and emails where they exchanged nude pictures.

Since the state of Georgia did not have gay marriage, we couldn't get divorced here when all this started to happen. But now with the Supreme Court decision legalizing gay marriage, I was wondering if we could get divorced here in Fulton County.

A.C. in Roswell, Georgia

Answer: Same-sex couples can now get divorced in Georgia. On June 26, 2015, the United States Supreme Court decided the case of Obergefell v. Hodges. The court held that same-sex marriage is a fundamental right guaranteed by the United States Constitution. Now all states are required to recognize same-sex marriages validly performed in other jurisdictions.

That means that if you were married in the many states where gay marriage was legal, such as California, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland and Washington, you can now get divorced here in Georgia. Because of the Supreme Court decision, Georgia has to recognize same-sex marriages in other states and it has to allow gay marriage within the state.

The same Georgia laws and rules of procedure will apply to divorcing same-sex couples as to “traditional marriages.” And that is true for issues of alimony, child support and child custody.

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