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Same sex civil union in VT, we live in Pa. Dissolution of Union, what happens with real estate that was mine before Union.

Reading, PA |

I own my house and paid it on my own before I met my partner.. Civil Union formed, I'm trying to find out what happens with my property that is titled soley in my name as I proceed with dissolution of my Civil Union. She is the type to fight for everything right down to screws in buildings if she purchased the screws. And no I'm not kidding, this is what I'm going thru right now. Please help She is also taking everything including all 3 vehicles that we had thru our 11 years together, leaving me without any transportation. If she has a receipt shes taking it. Including Rubber Membrane roof she put on house in 2005 or so.

Attorney Answers 1


It is important to keep in mind that your relationship is not currently recognized under Pennsylvania law. It may be possible to dissolve the civil union under Vermont law. It is my understanding that Vermont amended its laws several years ago to allow couples to entered into civil unions in Vermont to get those unions dissolved without requiring either party to be a resident of Vermont. Although I am not licensed in Vermont, my quick research ( has disclosed that there are several general requirements to dissolve the Vermont civil union:
1. neither party is a resident of Vermont;
2. the marriage or civil union was established in Vermont;
3. the parties home state bars dissolution of civil unions or same sex marriages;
4. there are no minor children born or adopted;
5. there is no relief from abuse or temporary restraining order regarding spousal abuse;
6. the parties must file a complete stipulation which sets out a resolution of all issues; and,
7. a complete exchange of financial information.
The complaint would be is filed in the County where the marriage or civil union license was filed. Upon the filing of the required documents, a hearing is waived and the dissolution or divorce is granted by the Vermont Courts. If the Court has a question, it may hold a hearing. That hearing may be by telephone.
Your situation may stuck on the last requirement. As far as what rights your STBX (soon to be ex) has in your property, you need to talk to an attorney with experience in real estate law because your STBX has no automatic rights under PA law by virtue of your civil union.
You may also want to consider mediating these issues.

The information provided is based on the limited information provided in the underlying question. The submission of an answer by Mr. Viola is not intended to create an attorney/client relationship between Mr. Viola and anyone who reviews the answer. The submission of a question on this website and the review of any answers should not substitute for consulting with an experienced attorney.

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