Partnership Planning

Protect your same-sex spouse or partner with the right documents in DC, MD & VA.

Our law firm has been the trusted advisor to more than 700 same-sex couples in D.C., Virginia and Maryland. We know the opportunities, the risks and the strategies that will protect you, and we’ll apply our experience with sensitivity to the issues that we same-sex couples share. We draft wills, trusts, powers of attorney and partnership agreements. We create pre- and post-nuptial agreements. We re-deed houses, put them into trusts, and do whatever it takes to insure that your assets really go to the person you love.

Are you already married? If you’re not, should you get married?

Talk to us as you consider whether to tie the knot, maintain your status quo, or – if you live in D.C. – register as Domestic Partners. Marriage comes with hundreds of benefits, but also with unexpected impacts that you should consider carefully.

You’re doing the right thing.

Yes, it’s difficult. It requires you to consider the worst. And it’s one of the greatest expressions of love and respect you can make. If you take the time to sign a few legal documents, you will know that everyone you care about is treated the way you want. You guarantee that your wishes carry the force of law. And you lift financial and legal burdens from those you love.


What our clients say about our work.

We are very pleased with your thoroughness and the way you have safeguarded our interests - business and personal.

- J.B. & C.G.

It’s nice to know that there’s someone like you who’s on our side.

- A.N. & D.M.

It was empowering and wonderful to be able to hand over the medical power of attorney as part of the hospital registration procedure when I had surgery last week. They definitely treated my partner differently after that.

- D.H.

Thank you very much for all your efforts and education, Larry. You have a winning style that puts people at ease. Know we will recommend you to anyone who asks about a high-performing attorney.

- J.S. & S.P.

SOME OF THE WAYS WE CAN HELP YOU
My family doesn’t approve of our relationship. Do I need to take any special legal steps?
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Despite much progress, family members who don’t understand or approve of our relationships still have the power to make trouble. This is especially true if you are not legally married. For unmarried couples, we prepare documents that carefully and clearly define your relationship and make your wishes clear. Even if you are married, we take special care in wills, powers of attorney and other documents to craft terms and language that prevent or neutralize interference.
Now that we can get married do we still need wills?
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Absolutely yes. You need wills for the same reasons that opposite-sex spouses have created them for centuries. The rules that apply if you die intestate (without wills) can have serious consequences for the survivor. Though marriage does indeed provide more protection, every couple has unique circumstances and wishes that can only be addressed in documents that are prepared expressly for you. This is even more important if you have or plan to have children.
I have a lot more assets than my spouse-to-be. Do I need a pre-nup?
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For many couples – especially those that have been together for years without marriage – one of them has bigger assets, a higher-paying job, or children from a previous marriage. For all of those reasons, a pre-nuptial agreement makes good sense to provide certainty about how pre-existing assets or obligations are protected after marriage. It sounds unromantic to many people, but it’s a critical step in making sure your post-marriage life reflects the realities of what you each brought to the union.
Do we need to re-title property that we own separately or together?
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As a standard part of our planning process, we review the title to your real estate to make sure it accurately reflects the state of your relationship. This helps prevent unnecessary expense or hassle if one of you should die. In particular, if you purchased property together before you got married, we will want to make sure that it’s now titled to you as a married couple. That gives spouses the maximum protection. Many such changes are easy and fairly inexpensive to accomplish, but the modifications can offer you huge benefits.