Estate Planning for Transgender Clients by Mass. LGBTQ Bar Assoc.

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BOSTON, Mass. – The Massachusetts LGBTQ Bar Association today announced their upcoming seminar, Estate Planning for Transgender Clients. The brown-bag seminar, to be followed by a roundtable discussion, will take place Friday, March 2, 2012, 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m. at the Boston Bar Association, 16 Beacon Street, Boston, MA.

Attorneys Michelle B. LaPointe and Allison Cleveland will provide an overview of relevant laws and focus on practical considerations for drafting and executing wills and non-testamentary instruments for transgender clients. Topics will include recognition of marriage for estate planning purposes, drafting incapacity documents, and postmortem planning for transgender clients.

Lawyers are encouraged to attend to learn more about how they can provide effective representation to transgender clients seeking estate-planning assistance.  Please visit the BBA website (www.bostonbar.org/membership/events) to register for the event.

“Transgender people and their families face many challenges in our legal system.  Informed, culturally competent legal representation is key to identifying and addressing these challenges,” said Elizabeth Monnin-Browder, Co-Chair of the Massachusetts LGBTQ Bar Association’s Committee on Transgender Inclusion and co-editor of the forthcoming GLAD publication, Transgender Family Law: A Guide to Effective Advocacy.

Attorney Michelle B. LaPointe, one of the presenters and author of the estate-planning chapter in Transgender Family Law: A Guide to Effective Advocacy (forthcoming), echoed this. “An attorney working with a transgender client must anticipate issues that may not arise with other clients to ensure that the client’s intentions are respected. “

The seminar is being co-sponsored by the Massachusetts LGBTQ Bar Association’s Committee on Transgender Inclusion and Trusts and Estates Section, the Boston Bar Association (BBA) Trusts and Estates Section, and Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders (GLAD).

Michelle B. LaPointe is a partner of Wade Horowitz LaPointe LLC. She is a member of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys and speaks regularly on issues surrounding long term care planning with a focus on special needs trusts. Michelle has also served on the board of the LGBT Political Alliance of Massachusetts.

Allison Cleveland is an associate in Day Pitney LLP, specializing in trusts and estates. She is a member of the firm’s LGBT and International Estate Planning Groups.  Allison currently serves on the Massachusetts LGBTQ Bar Association’s Committee on Transgender Inclusion.

The Massachusetts LGBTQ Bar Association is a voluntary state-wide professional association of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer lawyers and our allies providing a visible LGBTQ presence within the Massachusetts legal community.

The Boston Bar Association (BBA), the oldest bar association in the United States, serves as the hub of the legal profession in Boston, Massachusetts.

GLAD is New England’s leading legal rights organization dedicated to ending discrimination based on sexual orientation, HIV status and gender identity and expression. As part of their Transgender Rights Project, GLAD will be publishing Transgender Family Law: A Guide to Effective Advocacy later this spring.

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