Older same-sex couples still face challenges and need special estate planning despite the Supreme Court’s decision legalizing same-sex marriage.
Many older same-sex couples can now legalize their relationship and receive the same benefits as heterosexual couples but they often continue to face discrimination in other areas as the Columbus Dispatch explains in “Older same-sex couples face specific challenges“.
In many parts of the country discrimination in housing and employment is still not illegal against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.
Having a same-sex marriage announced in a newspaper could cause some people to be fired or evicted from their homes. Others fear social stigma and would prefer that their sexual orientation not be made public.
This leads to some older same-sex couples not getting married and thus not getting the estate planning benefits of being married.
Fortunately, same-sex couples who fear discrimination have other options besides marriage.
Traditional estate planning methods of ensuring a loved one is taken care of after a partner passes away are still available. Powers of attorney can be drafted to give a long-time partner control over financial and health care decisions as well.