Delaware

Delaware legal documents designed to protect your family no matter your relationship status

Delaware

delawareDelaware

Rainbow Law has a document package designed to protect same-sex partners in Delaware. We offer 9 unique Affordable Document Packages, Individual Legal Documents and FREE Advance Directives to help protect your rights and the rights of your family. To order a legal document package that complies with Delaware law, hover your mouse over the “Buy A Package” link in the top menu and click on the package that best suits your needs in the drop-down list. If you’re not sure what package is right for you, click this link and we’ll help you figure out what you need.

Delaware recognizes the right of gay and lesbian couples to marry. And because the US Supreme Court overturned parts of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), the federal government also recognizes LGBT marriages. This means same-sex married couples living in Delaware are eligible for all rights and benefits afforded to heterosexual married couples.

Delaware same-sex partners and family members might continue to experience some discrimination – like snubbing by your family of origin or by complete strangers in a social setting. These insults can’t be dealt with legally; they require a set of adaptive behaviors, including education, humor, and a thick skin.

Here is a run-down on Delaware law affecting the LGBTQ community:

1 Recognition of Same-Sex Relationships: Same-sex marriage became legal in Delaware on July 1, 2013. House Bill 75, titled An act to amend Title 13 of the Delaware code relating to domestic relations to provide for same-gender civil marriage and to convert existing civil unions to civil marriages, was signed into law by Governor Jack Markell hours after its passage in the Delaware House of Representatives and Senate. Though Rhode Island enacted legislation legalizing same-sex marriage before Delaware, on July 1, Delaware became the eleventh state, and twelfth US jurisdiction, to allow same-sex couples to marry, preceding Minnesota and Rhode Island by one month.

Delaware previously extended recognition to same-sex relationships in the form of civil unions, which grant same-sex couples the “rights, benefits, protections, and responsibilities” of married persons. Civil unions have been available in Delaware since January 1, 2012, following the enactment of legislation signed by Governor Markell on May 11, 2011.

To date, sixteen states – CA, CT, DE, HI, IA, IL, ME, MD, MA, MN, NH, NJ, NY, RI, VT, and WA – plus Washington, D.C. have the freedom to marry for same-sex couples.

2 Adoption Law: Delaware law permits any unmarried adult or married couple to petition a court for adoption of a child. The first second-parent adoption involving a same-sex couple occurred in October 2001. Since January 2012, same-sex couples in a civil union or marriage have the same adoption rights as opposite-sex couples.

3 Anti-Discrimination Law: Since 2009, Delaware law has prohibited discrimination on the basis of actual or perceived sexual orientation in employment, housing, public accommodations, and other areas. Since 2013, Delaware law has prohibited discrimination on the basis of actual or perceived gender identity in employment, housing, public accommodations, and other areas. Since 2001, Delaware has imposed additional penalties for committing a violent crime motivated by the victim’s actual or perceived sexual orientation.

4 Sodomy Law: Delaware repealed its sodomy law in July 1972. The repeal of the sodomy law became effective on January 1, 1973.


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