How Can My Charity & I Both Benefit from My Gift?

While many same-sex couples have done some estate planning, few have truly created an estate plan as a couple. For example, most people name a beneficiary on their retirement accounts or insurance policies, but fail to name a back up or contingent beneficiary. As I tell my clients, it is important to have a back up just in case it’s a tie!

Domestic Violence-How to Protect Yourself

When law enforcement, government agencies, and people generally think of domestic abuse an image of a heterosexual couple is immediately cast. It’s traditionally assumed that the abuser is the male partner and the victim is the female partner. The ugly truth is that domestic violence occurs at similar rates among LGBTQ as heterosexual people. According to 2012 Center for American Progress study, one in four same-sex couples have experienced domestic violence– the same for heterosexual females.

First Comes Marriage Equality, Then Comes… Divorce Equality?

Everyone has the right to marry which means everyone also has the right to divorce. The divorce process for same-sex couples is identical to that of a heterosexual couple. And for each family there are different circumstances, causes, and results that lead them to divorce. A divorcing couple falls into to broad categories: divorcing with an agreement or divorcing with a judge order.

The RAISE Act

Or how not to reform immigration laws of the US On February 13th, 2017, two Republican Senators introduced Senate bill 354 – the “Reforming American Immigration for Strong Employment Act” or the RAISE Act – to the Senate, which referred it to the Senate Committee on the Judiciary. It has not been voted on by the full Congress nor has it been sent to the White House for signing into law. So, nothing that follows is currently the law and anyone who says otherwise is just trying to frighten people. Senate Bill 354 is a proposal of what these two […]

Travel in the Trump Era (July 2017 Update)

The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals issued a decision on the preliminary injunction by the US District Court for the District of Maryland against enforcement of both the first Executive Order (“EO-1”) and the second Executive Order (“EO-2”) on May 25th, 2017, and then amended the decision on June 15th, 2017. The Fourth Circuit stated that the main issue in the case was whether the US Constitution “protects Plaintiffs’ right to challenge an Executive Order that in text speaks with vague words of national security, but in context drips with religious intolerance, animus, and discrimination.” The court found that the […]

Ashes to Ashes Planning Your Legacy

Making your final arrangements William Wordsworth said that the best part of a good man’s life is “his little nameless unrememberd acts of kindness and of love.”  In this spirit, many of us work to fill each page of our life’s story with small deeds of compassion and helpfulness. One such deed we might not have considered is planning our final farewell.