Remember when Washington State was one of the first states to recognize a domestic partnership for same sex couples? American history was made that day. That legislation, passed in 2007, allowed lots of people stand up and make their love visible by registering their relationship with the Washington Secretary of State. Couples who went ahead with registering as domestic partners changed their legal status to what’s known under the law as a Registered Domestic Partnership (RDP).
Well, here we are eight years later, and marriage equality in Washington is a legislative fact and a real option for most of Washington State’s gay couples. However, if you are a gay couple who registered and received status as being in an RDP from days past, you might be getting married without realizing it. Or, if you are planning to get married, you might want to review your status with a Seattle divorce lawyer.
Why? Because you may end up inadvertently married on June 30, 2014, when, by operation of law, all same sex Registered Domestic Partnerships convert into marriages in Washington State. Yes, that’s right. It’s happening automatically.
How do you find out if you (or your loved one) are part of a Registered Domestic Partnership? Just type a name in here: http://www.sos.wa.gov/corps/domesticpartnerships/
If you think it’s a good idea to dissolve your Registered Domestic Partnership, you’ll want to come in and discuss your options with a family law attorney in Seattle.
DuBois Cary Law Group offers marriage and partnership legal counseling for same-sex couples. Please feel free to call us at (206) 547-1486 to schedule a consultation.