Kansas law affords married partners hundreds of economic and other protections. For families where traditional marriage is not an option, we work to determine our clients’ needs, and then make use of the legal remedies available to achieve their goals. In every instance, we stress the need for clients to plan ahead and be proactive.
The tools we use include powers of attorney, wills, cohabitation agreements and trusts. While each of these topics is addressed elsewhere in this website, it is critical to understand that we incorporate terms in each of these documents that are specifically relevant to our nontraditional and LGBT clients. For example, we incorporate terms in our power of attorney for health care decisions to guarantee that clients are permitted access to unmarried partners when those partners are hospitalized. We also include terms granting our clients control of all aspects of the unmarried partner’s funeral to avoid conflicts with biological relatives who may deny or resent their daughter’s or son’s nontraditional relationship.
We also work closely with our clients’ financial advisers to structure agreements to protect them financially. We are particularly concerned with minimizing the negative tax effects of being unmarried or that can attach when unmarried partners attempt to transfer assets to each other. Sometimes, our clients’ concerns are more day-to-day oriented. “How can we buy a house together when only one of us can qualify for a mortgage?” Or, “Can we formalize our agreement about paying our household bills?” In every case, we strive to provide the legal guidance necessary to navigate in a legal world that seems unduly hostile to the nontraditional family.
If you have questions about any of these topics, or need advice on some other nontraditional family law issue, please contact us to set up a consultation appointment. We can help.