Rachel Catt Featured in "Carving Out A Solo Niche in LGBTQ Family Law" for Law Week Colorado
Originally published in Law Week Colorado.
Rachel Catt’s two-decade legal career has included some pretty big “returns” in recent years. About six years ago, after years of practicing family law in San Francisco, she returned to Colorado to raise her kids in the state where she grew up. And now she’s coming home to solo practice after several years at Harrington Brewster Mahoney Smits in Denver.
“It’s sort of going back to something familiar,” said Catt, who had her own practice in California for eight years. But her plans for her Denver firm, the Law Office of Rachel Catt, are bigger than what she had done in the Bay Area, presenting new challenges and an opportunity to focus even more on her area of expertise: LGBTQ family law.
Carving Out a Niche
“The background I have with LGBTQ family law, it was always a constant driver and something that I wanted to be able to put at the forefront in my practice,” Catt said. Part of serving LGBTQ clients boils down to trust and cultural competency. As a member of the community herself, Catt said, she’s able to pick up on and be sensitive to cultural nuances and concerns that other attorneys might not be aware of. But there are also legal needs unique to these clients, and LGBTQ family law has changed dramatically over the past 20 years.
Before domestic partnerships were introduced in California, Catt said, “family relationships were all done in a creative manner.” Attorneys serving LGBTQ clients had to create legal frameworks for everything from parental rights to health insurance coverage.