Certified Specialist In Ohio Family Law
Client-Centered Legal Advice
I am Carol Fey, a Certified Specialist in Ohio Family Relations Law with 30 years of experience as a family law attorney. I am committed to providing quality legal representation to my clients throughout Central Ohio.
Each client's needs are unique, and there is no cookie-cutter solution to family legal issues. I have an in-depth understanding of the nuances and ever-changing landscape of Ohio family law. I offer clients a comprehensive review of their legal options and a candid assessment of the best strategies to achieve their desired outcomes. Many clients have never worked with an attorney before; I can guide you through the process in a way that focuses on your individual needs and treats you with respect.
Creative, Collaborative Approaches To Resolving Conflict
My legal practice is defined by a conviction that the best outcomes for all of the parties involved can almost always be achieved through respectful, focused, principled negotiation couples can arrive at fair, mutually satisfactory outcomes without having to go through the expense, ordeal, and emotional toll that are associated with using courts and litigation to resolve the very personal issues involved in ending a marriage.
Sometimes my clients find it useful to work with a mediator toward resolving some of their disputes, then with my assistance the mediated agreement can be worked into the comprehensive divorce or dissolution arrangements. Mediation can often be useful in working out differences around schedules for parenting time and other child-focused issues.
I am also among the original members of the Central Ohio Academy of Collaborative Divorce Professionals. Collaborative divorce goes beyond concepts of negotiation. A "different way to divorce," the "Collaborative Law Process" is a nonadversarial divorce process conducted completely outside of the court system. Clients and their attorneys meet together to share all relevant information, discuss and work toward resolutions that meet each party's goals. All negotiations are conducted above board with both parties and their attorneys present, in an atmosphere of dignity and respect. This process seeks to accomplish all decisions in a manner that meets the needs of both parties and their children. If this process peaks your interest, I'll be happy to explore it with you.
Central Ohio LGBT Advocate
I am a pioneer among LGBT family law advocates. The first Ohio attorney to legally establish shared legal custody of children for same-sex parents, I have for the past three decades been at the forefront of the constantly developing and changing legal arena of same-sex marriages, divorces, custody and legal protections.
Now that same-sex couples are permitted to marry in Ohio and throughout the United States, marriage adds one more tool to the many relationship and family structures that LGBT people can use to formalize and protect their families. LGBT couples who choose to marry, especially after a long prior unmarried relationship, may well want to consider entering into a pre-nuptial agreement with each other to avoid uncertainty in their financial relationship should they ever divorce.
Married couples who had children together before they were married can arrange a second parent adoption to formalize their children's legal relationship with the other partner - this can be done both for minor children and adult children. Married couples who have children during their marriage should consider solidifying the legal status of the spouse who is not the birth mother through the filing of a simple parentage confirmation, to ensure full recognition of both spouses as parents; there is no legal determination at this point that a marital presumption will apply to same-sex married parents, and simply getting both parents on the birth certificate may not be sufficient without a supporting court order.
The processes will differ for couples who used an unknown donor, vs a known donor to add children to their families; couples who used a known donor can expect that their situation is more complex from a legal standpoint, and should strongly consider consulting with an experienced attorney to advise how the relationships they intend can best be protected.
Many LGBT couples do not choose to marry. In that event, unmarried relationship agreements and legal establishment of shared child custody can offer the structures and planning necessary to legally formalize and protect a same-sex relationship.
Many attorneys are jumping on the bandwagon and claiming to offer legal services to lesbian and gay clients; unfortunately, I find that far too often the experience these attorneys bring to their LGBT clients lacks the depth of experience that I bring to this legal arena. Whether you and your partner are seeking legal protections for your family, are having children together, are buying a home together, or want to prepare wills and medical powers of attorney, or if you find yourself in a position where your relationship is ending, it is essential that you retain an attorney who understands who you are, and respects your unique history, goals, and needs. I am proud to be one of the attorneys who can do that for you and who has been doing that for going on 30 years.
As a recognized authority in LGBT family law matters, I help lesbian and gay couples establish legal rights and obligations to one another and to their children that are binding and enforceable, and ensure that their plans together will be implemented and respected even if they later end their relationship or one party dies.
Certified — Collaborative — Compassionate
For decades, I have helped families and divorcing couples in Central Ohio end their marriages and relationships, plan for the future with prenuptial agreements, wills, and other estate planning techniques, and protect their nontraditional and LGBT families with court-approved shared custody agreements and relationship contracts. I can do the same for you. For answers to your questions and to schedule an appointment, call me at 614-232-9100, or send an email using the online contact form.