What is Financial Discovery?

Not all Family Law cases require financial discovery. However, there are many cases in which a spouse must take the extra step of investigating all financial issues of a marriage or registered domestic partnership to obtain sufficient information to negotiate or litigate. In these matters, there are several methods by which you can seek much needed information and documentation to get an accurate financial picture. When should you consider propounding discovery? While you should be very cautious about when/if discovery …
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Are Three Parents a Crowd? Understanding California’s 3rd Parent Law

California’s Three Parent Law: How might it affect you? Most children have two parents, a mother and a father, two moms or two dads. But what about a child that has three (or more!) parents? What is a three parent family? A three – or more – parent family might seem wildly out there, but it’s a situation many families are facing. For example, a lesbian couple could have a child with a sperm donation from a close friend. The …
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Who’s Your Daddy? Exciting Changes to CA Assisted Reproduction Law

We have all heard the horror story of the Kansas Craigslist sperm donor ordered to pay child support. If you have not, here’s a brief recap: Two lesbian women were in a committed relationship and in order to save costs, decided to advertise on Craigslist for sperm donation rather than use private sperm donation (which can be pricey). Makes sense right? — you get the benefit of meeting the donor in person and get a sense of who they really …
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Tips for a Successful Mediation

Mediation works when it is done right. It can be a fabulous way of reducing animosity, finalizing a divorce quickly and efficiently, keeping your personal life and private details more confidential, saving money and resolving conflict. Mediation is not right everyone – it only works when there is no power imbalance, both parties agree to be transparent with finances, each spouse has a serious desire for settlement and neither party has denied access to the children. Benefits of mediation include …
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Our Postnup Primer

Post-nuptial agreements are a written consensus between two parties, entered into after the marriage occurs. The purpose of a post-nuptial agreement (also known as Marital agreement or Transmutation agreement) is similar to the purpose of a pre-nuptial agreement in that it helps parties work through potential problems before they occur so there are less surprises down the road. A post-nuptial agreement offers protection to both parties by allowing the couple to discuss the division of assets without leaving that division …
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Is a donor agreement enough to protect my same-sex partner from a challenge to her parental rights?


Usually not. In California, maybe. In short, we recommend a second parent adoption or a ‘Paternity’ action to terminate the parental rights of the (known) donor ‘father’ and establish the non carrying spouse as the second parent in the eyes of the law. But why? The law is unsettled, especially with the passage of new legislation that allows for more than two legal parents of a child. Artificial insemination can be the key to building a family, especially for same-sex …
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Will tomorrow be the day? LFLG anxiously awaits landmark decisions on gay marriage


Tomorrow morning the Supreme Court of the United States is expected to announce their decisions in Hollingsworth v. Perry, a case that challenges California’s gay marriage ban (Proposition 8), and United States v. Windsor, which contests the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). As family law attorneys practicing in the Bay Area who have strong ties to the LGBT community, we are particularly interested in the outcome of these two cases. While many people expect landmark decisions to be released, there …
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Is it necessary for my same-sex domestic partner to adopt our children?

Same sex couple

Short answer, Yes. What is the law? California law provides that “the rights and obligations of registered domestic partners with respect to a child of either of them shall be the same as those of spouses.” This means: A child born to a registered domestic partners is considered the legal child of BOTH partners, regardless of their biological connection. Lesbians who use artificial insemination = BOTH parents can be listed on the birth certificate. Note: Gay men who use a …
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