Category Archives: LGBT

Blumenthal v Brewer: What Can Go Wrong If Couples Do Not Marry

Women and men who do not marry each other, even in decades-long relationships, have no right to maintenance (formerly called alimony) if the relationship ends.  These unmarried women and men also have no right to their former partner’s property, such as a profitable business and retirement benefits, even if they contributed time and money to […]

US Supreme Court Upholds Adoption Rights

As an adoptive parent, I could not have been more pleased to read the outcome of the case of V.L. v. E.L., announced by the United States Supreme Court on March 7, 2016.  In this case, the Court upheld a woman’s adoption of three children born to her same sex partner.  The opinion, which addresses […]

Supreme Court Finds Fundamental Right to Same-Sex Marriage

On June 26, 2015, the Supreme Court released Obergefell v. Hodges, a landmark decision requiring all states to allow same-sex couples to marry. The decision was released on the second anniversary of United States v. Windsor, which struck down provisions of the federal Defense of Marriage Act that defined “marriage” as an exclusively heterosexual union. […]

On Property Rights for Same Sex Spouses

The past decade has seen tremendous progress in the battle for marriage equality.  State bans on same sex marriage are falling one after another, granting these families the legal recognition they were denied for too long. On June 1, 2011, the Civil Union Act became effective and Illinois not only began granting civil unions, but […]

The Federal Government Recognizes the Validity of Utah Same-Sex Marriages

Within the past month, the eyes of the nation have focused on developments in Utah regarding the validity of same-sex marriage in that state, which are likely to have a major impact across the country. Shortly before Christmas, a federal judge struck down the State’s ban on same-sex marriage, finding that it violated the due […]

What You Need to Know About Civil Unions in Illinois

On January 31, 2011, Governor Pat Quinn signed into law the Illinois Religious Freedom Protection and Civil Union Act, thereby making Illinois the 18th U.S. jurisdiction to pass legislation establishing a legal basis for some form of same-sex family relationships.  While Illinois is the sixth state to formally recognize civil unions, twelve other states have […]