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Non-Traditional Families

Love Makes a Family Members of the LGBT community, people who choose to live with siblings, individuals who have chosen to remain single and others involved in marriages, domestic partnerships, civil unions or relationships that are not legally recognized in South Carolina face unique legal concerns. When your familial situation is not recognized or sanctioned by the state, it is important to plan ahead.

The fear is not imaginary. You don't want to leave only obligations and grief to the people you love. They need legally binding authority from you to receive assets if you die, manage assets if you are not able to, or make medical decisions for you when you cannot do so yourself.  Unless you are prepared, if you are incapacitated, often your "next of kin" are the default parties to have decision-making authority instead of your closest loved ones. If you pass away, your "next of kin" will automatically inherit all of your assets, rather than your life partner, unless you leave a will saying otherwise.

This fear does not have to be a reality. We can give you the tools you need to protect your rights and implement your wishes. We will work with you to create the documents you need to protect your family, including the following documents:

  • A Last Will and Testament
  • An expression of your desires for a guardian for your children
  • Durable healthcare and financial powers of attorney
  • Domestic partnership agreements or cohabitation agreements
  • Living and revocable trusts
  • A review of  beneficiaries for insurance, 401(k)s, pension plans and other funds

We can also take care of all your other family law and estate planning issues, including  adoptions, child custody and child support modifications. Many situations can be resolved amicably through mediation and informal settlements. Mediation allows you and your former partner to work through the issues together without expensive litigation to create mutually agreeable solutions.

Every family is unique, and every nontraditional family has different circumstances and challenges.  The Upstate Law Group understands and cares about ALL families and the struggles they face. We will work with you to develop a unique plan that works for your family.


The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation. We invite you to contact us and welcome your calls, letters and electronic mail. Contacting us does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any confidential or time-sensitive information to us until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established.