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How a SameSex Marriage and Couple Can Manage Their Finances

Updated on May 6, 2012

How a SameSex Marriage and Couple Can Manage Their Finances

We all have dreams and goals for our lives and family, and being involved in a samesex marriage or relationship, makes no difference.

Laws have only improved slightly for same sex couples including domestic partnerships or civil unions that are recognized by the following states: California, Connecticut, Hawaii, New Jersey, Oregon, Maine, and Washington.

Same sex marriages are banned in many states, but are allowed in Massachusetts and Connecticut. Iowa became the third state as of April 2009 to allow same-sex marriages. As of September 2009, same sex marriages became legal in Vermont. New Hampshire became the fifth state as of January 1, 2010 to legalize same-sex marriage, which replaces civil unions, and as of January 1, 2011, all civil unions in New Hampshire became marriages, unless otherwise noted. District of Columbia is the sixth location that has legalized same-sex marriages as of March 2010.

As far as Colorado, same-sex marriages was banned in 2006. Although, Governor Ritter did sign a bill (House Bill 1260) that allows property to be left to their partners by making them a designated beneficiary.

As a whole, the laws related to a samesex marriage still have a long way to go when compared to heterosexual couples. The federal government does not really recognize gay marriages. So where does this leave gay couples when planning their financial future together?

There are many financial changes that can typically occur in any given 12-month period: being laid off of a job, retirement, a natural disaster, a major purchase, an illness, the adoption of a child, a death, providing care for an elderly parent and so forth.

These changes can occur whether or not you are gay. However, if you are a gay couple, how can you prepare for these changes and challenges, if or when they occur?

It may be useful to consult with a Financial Planner for starters.

Financial Planning in itself is the process of managing one’s finances to achieve certain goals and dreams, while at the same time helping to negotiate the financial barriers that arise in every stage of life.

Typically, a Financial Planner will collect a client’s data (check stubs, checking & credit statements, titles for homes, tax returns, insurance policies, etc.) prioritize their goals, examine resources, make recommendations, and implement a plan according to the client’s personal needs. A Financial Planner may also suggest various investment and business elements to meet retirement goals.

Since laws for gay couples are limited, it is very important that everything you and your partner would like to achieve be in writing. This especially consists of the following types of legal documents:

-Wills and/or Revocable Living Trusts

-Durable Power of Attorney for Health care and for Finances

-Domestic Partner Agreement

-Parenting Agreements

-Delegating Beneficiaries

A Financial Planner can help you to achieve your long-term financial goals. Regardless of what your financial situation is, there are numerous Financial Planners who specialize in a variety of areas and cater to your specific financial needs.

Financial Planning for Same Sex Couples

Power of Attorney for Gay and Lesbian Partners

How can you locate a Financial Planner and how do you know if you can trust them?

 A genuine Financial Planner is a Certified Financial Planner (CFP®) that is regulated with the state, has an ethical obligation to act in your interest, has no ethical violations against them, and follows a Code of Ethics, consisting of: Integrity, Objectivity, Competence, Fairness, Confidentiality, Professionalism, and Diligence. The Financial Planner may work as a Sole Practitioner or with a company.

The Financial Planning Association (FPA) and the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. (CFP) both provide listings of Certified Financial Planners throughout the United States. 

Do not leave you and your partner’s future in the hands of chance. Changing the laws means being informed, and voicing your opinion by way of writing and calling congress. Being informed means accessing your rights in order to make those rights better and fair.

Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc.

Financial Planning Association



Smart Gay Couples Finish Smart - RothIRA


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    • tinisha12 profile image

      tinisha12 6 years ago from Denver, Colorado

      Thank you MrTrustStore. I appreciate it :)

    • MrTrustStore profile image

      Randall Kaiden 6 years ago from Oxnard & Santa Clarita, CA

      You've made a great and thorough Hub. I cover some of the legal aspects of California Registered Domestic Partnership on my website,, as well. Nice job here!

    • tinisha12 profile image

      tinisha12 7 years ago from Denver, Colorado

      Thank you Simone.

    • Simone Smith profile image

      Simone Haruko Smith 7 years ago from San Francisco

      You're addressing a very important issue with this Hub, and I really appreciate that! Thanks so much for creating the guide!