is the Supervising Attorney for the Gay Family Law Center, and Director of LGBT Wills, Trusts, and Estate Planning. She is passionate about helping the LGBTQ community plan for their future and strives to provide our clients with the best legal representation.
Ms. Gates has a vast expanse of legal knowledge and experience which makes Gay Family Law Center excited to have her as our Estate Planning Director; for an attorney who not only understands LGBTQ Estate Planning, but has extensive knowledge of the legal and human world in which we live, is better suited to foresee potential issues down the line and advise our clients how to plan for them, or preferably avoid them altogether.
Ms. Gates not only gives our clients a full and thorough estate plan, but she also gives our clients her exceptional insight into the bigger picture of their legal lives and she is able to consult with them and understand the breadth of each person’s unique life.
Ms. Gates provides our clients with peace of mind and security in their personal financial affairs.
Ms. Gates’ twenty-seven years of experience as a licensed California attorney gives her insight and knowledge of the law that benefits all our clients. Ms. Gates graduated in the top of her class from a top 10 national law school (Hastings College of the Law). She was chosen by the California Supreme Court for a coveted intern position while still a law student. Ms. Gates’ education, experience, and skill as a top-notch attorney has gained her admission to not only the California State Bar, but the bars of the United States District Court, Central District of California, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, and the United States Supreme Court.
Ms. Gates has utilized her impressive ability to excel in the understanding and creative use of the law to represent hundreds of clients at a time when they needed her most. Her dedication and drive to do the best for her clients has taken her in to a variety of arenas. Due to her fearless nature, not only does Ms. Gates have a wealth of transactional work (legal documents and contracts), including Trusts, Wills, and Powers of Attorney, she also has vast experience in many areas of civil and criminal law, including trademark, copyright, service mark, unfair business practices, landlord/tenant, and torts.
The GFLC clients are happy to have Ms. Gates on their team as her skill, creativity, and caring provide truly unique and special representation.
Attorney Michael Bialys, has been licensed for 14 years. Mr. Bialys has always considered that the staple of his practice was protecting and enforcing the rights of clients who could not protect themselves. With this in mind Michael envisioned a practice that catered specifically to the LGBTQ community.
The day that California changed the laws legalizing same sex marriage, The Gay Family Law Center was born. Michael was passionate about the opportunity to practice law in an area and cater to a community that fought long and hard for their rights, but the battle had just begun. Michael was ready to participate and fight on the front lines in helping the old law adapt and adjust to the new needs and requirements the LGBTQ community.
“Everyday brings challenges and I am excited to meet the challenges posed by a new legal Frontier.”
is a member of the California, Washington DC, and Virginia State Bars, as well as the United States District Courts for the Central and Eastern Districts of California. Ms. Paul received her Juris Doctor from American University – Washington College of Law after graduating from George Mason University with a Bachelor of Arts in English/Writing. She also holds a Masters degree in Educational Psychology from the University of Virginia. As an attorney, Ms. Paul worked in the organized crime division for her county prosecutor’s office before starting her own civil litigation practice. She has worked for three litigation firms, where she focused primarily on family law, animal rights law, corporate law, property law, and trust and estate law. Throughout her legal career, Ms. Paul has provided pro bono legal representation to human and animal rights organizations. Ms. Paul has served on several legal committees and is currently a member of the Litigation Section of the California State Bar.
Ms. Paul is passionate about the practice of law and enjoys the heavy client interaction that goes along with it. Ms. Paul enjoys advocating for her clients both inside and outside of the courtroom. Although she will never back down from a litigation challenge, she will always attempt to resolve matters amicably when possible and in the best interests of her client. Ms. Paul is always sympathetic to her clients’ needs and they, in turn, appreciate her knowledge, professionalism, and the keen attention to detail that she possesses. Ms. Paul is a valuable asset to the firm, her clients, and the LGBTQ community.
is a member of the New York and Connecticut State Bars. Born in Montreal, Canada, he graduated from Vermont Law School in 1989. In 1990 he began his legal career in New York City working as Assistant United States Counsel for Air France. During his time with Air France he worked extensively in dispute resolution, human resources, and contract negotiations. In 2000, Mark’s negotiation and resolution experience landed him the position of Assistant General Counsel for a web design firm catering to Fortune 500 companies. Again Mark’s work focused on human resources and negotiating contracts. In 2004, Mark took a break from the practice of law and he and his partner moved to Florida where they owned and operated a busy and successful retail store in Fort Lauderdale. Both he and his partner (now his husband) were active with Equality Florida. In 2015, they sold their business and moved to the Palm Springs area. Mark recently joined Gay Family Law Center as our Administrative Director. Mark’s extensive experience working with people during troubling times and his understanding of various aspects of the law make him a unique asset of our firm. Mark will be taking the California State bar examine soon and we look forward to also adding him to our team of lawyers thereafter.
is a graduate of the Juris Doctorate program at UCLA School of Law in Los Angeles, California. During her tenure at UCLA, Ms. Norris served as Submissions Editor for the UCLA Women’s Law Journal and Article Selection Editor for the Dukeminier Awards Journal of Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Law. During all three years of law school, Ms. Norris volunteered with the Los Angeles County Bar Association Domestic Violence Project, drafting hundreds of declarations for victims of domestic violence seeking Temporary Restraining Orders on an emergency basis. Throughout law school, Ms. Norris also found time to mentor underprivileged high school students in the Los Angeles area through Minds Matter.
Ms. Norris received her Bachelor of Arts degree in International Relations with an Outstanding Performance Award, and a second major in Women and Gender Studies from the University of California at Davis. Ms. Norris studied politics, Hindi, and women’s rights in India for six months during college at the University of Hyderabad in Hyderabad, India and the Landour Language School in Mussoorie, India. Ms. Norris volunteered at the State Capital to monitor Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger’s public image. Ms. Norris was also a member of the Integrated Studies Honors Program and a recipient of the Regents Scholarship, United Technologies Scholarship, and Dean’s List.
Ms. Norris’ practice is strictly focused on the issues of family law litigation and mediation, including child custody and visitation, spousal support, child support, business valuation, prenuptial agreements, and judgment enforcement. However, Ms. Norris also has experience in state and federal criminal defense, class actions, consumer fraud, and wage and hour cases in employment law.
is a proud graduate of the University of San Diego School of Law. Licensed to practice law in California since 2003, Ms. Chow is also admitted to practice before the United States District Courts for Central and Southern Districts of California. Ms. Chow brings the unique perspective and experience of working with parents of children with disabilities to the practice of family law. In law school, Ms. Chow served as Coordinator for the University of San Diego Pro Bono Legal Advocates Special Education Project. She also received the Outstanding Special Education Legal Clinic Intern Award for her work advocating for the educational needs of children with disabilities. In addition, Ms. Chow has tried special education matters before the Office of Administrative Hearings, as well as, presented to small and large audiences on topics involving children with disabilities.
Prior to opening her own practice focusing on special education law, Ms. Chow worked for several years in the area of civil litigation. Her litigation experience includes working on matters involving allegations of excessive force, unlawful search and seizure, employee discipline, dangerous conditions of public property and construction defects.
As the parent of a child with a disability, Ms. Chow understands firsthand the dynamics of families with children with special needs and the issues they face. She is excited and passionate about working in the area of family and with the LGBTQ community. As always, Ms. Chow stays focused on the heart of any matter, which are her clients and advocating for their needs.
Just like any family, LGBTQ family challenges come in all shapes and sizes. The Gay Family Law Center has an unparalleled depth and breadth of knowledge in LGBTQ divorce and dissolution, same-sex adoption, LGBTQ surrogacy, child custody, and visitation. We also specialize in LGBTQ pre-nuptial and post-nuptial agreements, LGBTQ wills, trusts, and estate planning, as well as Marvin Actions and LGBTQ co-habitation agreements.
At Gay Family Law Center, our attorneys understand your concerns and honor your unique experience. Our lawyers have deep expertise in LGBTQ family law and an unwavering commitment to achieve the best outcome for you and/or your children.
We understand your situation, so give us a call today to discuss your needs at 855 LAW-LGBT (529-5428).