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Same-sex marriage: Should you tie the knot?

We all know about the many benefits of same-sex marriage, and simply from the standpoint of equality and civil rights, the fact that same-sex marriage is now the right of all gay couples is something to be celebrated. However, just because it is now legal for gay couples to get married, it is not a good reason for partners to run to make a beeline to their local churches and courthouses to tie the proverbial knot. There are benefits and drawbacks of being married and both should be considered.

Let's look two of the most important drawbacks of marriage in general that gay couples should keep in mind when weighing the pros and cons of legally solidifying their unions:

-- When couples get married, they are giving up certain rights and privileges and surrendering them to their partners, or to a family law court if disagreements arise. Yes, couples will need to get approval for certain decisions they make from their partners regarding finances and child rearing, and if approval and agreement cannot be achieved, breaking up is not as simple as sending a text on Facebook.

-- Marriage is often the symbol of love, but legally, it's also a symbol of "joint property status." From the date one says "I do," any assets, property or income earned by that spouse will be owned 50 percent by the other spouse. This also applies to credit card and other types of debt. This can make breakups very painful financially, bringing more seriousness to any decisions surrounding a divorce.

Just like any other couple in a loving relationship, the decision to get married should not be made in haste and it should not be made simply because the opportunity suddenly arises. Yes, there are many positive benefits of being married, but there are negative sides to it too. Therefore, whether gay or straight, all couples need to consider whether marriage is right for them. A great way to consider these issues objectively is to make an appointment with a family law attorney who can help you look at your marriage from as many angles as possible.

Source: FindLaw, "Same-Sex Marriage Legal Pros and Cons," accessed Nov. 03, 2016

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