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Law Resources for the LGBT Community

This article was approved by Jim Adler

Members of society who identify as a part of the LGBT community are those who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender. While the term refers to these particular sexual orientations or gender identities, it acts as an umbrella term for anyone whose sexual orientation or gender identity is considered to be non-traditional. This also includes individuals who are unsure about their sexual orientation or those who are struggling to identify with a specific gender, which also makes them vulnerable to discrimination. Unfortunately, those who are considered to be a part of these minority groups are frequently subjected to discrimination, harassment, or general bullying by people who disagree with how they live their lives. Discrimination, harassment, or bullying because of sexual orientation or gender, however, is not acceptable, and there are measures that can be taken with the help of the law to take a stand for LGBT rights and equality.

LGBT Bar Association of Greater New York

The LGBT Bar Association of Greater New York provides links and information to legal resources including legal guides and contact information for organizations that are able to assist with legal cases related to the LGBT community.

American Civil Liberties Union: LGBT Rights

LGBT rights are a prime concern for the American Civil Liberties Union. On their website, those needing legal guidance in reference to the LGBT community are offered a variety of resources.

Gay-Straight Alliance Network: Legal Resources

The Gay-Straight Alliance Network focuses on legal rights of those in the LGBT community to ensure that members are protected from unfair acts such as harassment and discrimination.

Fact Sheet: Legal Issues for LGBT Caregivers

The Family Caregiver Alliance has provided this information about the actions that gay couples should take to protect their rights in case one of them is incapacitated or dies.

Transgender Law and Policy: Non-Discrimination Laws

At the Transgender Law and Policy Institute, those who are members of the transgender community are able to find information on laws that prevent discrimination and legal resources involving employment discrimination, social services, and marriage and family law.

Non-Discrimination Laws and You

For those located in Georgia, the Equality Foundation of Georgia is able to assist individuals with legal matters involving inequality for those who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender.

Get Legal Help

The National Center for Lesbian Rights offers an easy online resource center that enables people who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender to find legal aid and assistance.

Did You Know It’s Legal in Most States to Discriminate Against LGBT People?

An NPR piece looks at states where people can still be fired from their jobs or barred from housing simply for being gay.

Immigration Inequality

Immigration Inequality focuses on providing legal resources to gay or transgender individuals who are struggling with legal matters involving immigration.

Benefits for Same-Sex Couples Post-DOMA (video)

Legal resources are provided for aging members of the LGBT community by the National Resource Center on LGBT Aging.

LGBT Rights Toolkit: Know Your Federal Rights

For those who live in the southern portion of the United States, this site assists members of the LGBT community in securing helpful and supportive legal aid.

Civil Rights 101: Gays and Lesbians

The Leadership Conference fights for civil rights of all members of society, including LGBT members. This page looks at laws and court cases affecting the gay community.

Sexual Orientation Discrimination: Your Rights

Learn about federal, state, and local laws that project gay and lesbian workers from discrimination.

Constitutional Conflicts: Gay Rights

This page looks at the court battles that have shaped public policies and interpretations of the Constitution surrounding gay rights.

Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer Guide to Services and Resources (PDF)

For the LGBTQ community in New York City, the office of the comptroller has created a resource guide for local assistance with legal matters, health concerns, and much more.

Ending Housing Discrimination Against Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Individuals and Their Families

On this website, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development provides a list of states that currently ban housing discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity/expression along with contact information for each state’s human rights department.

The Laws That Project You

Lambda Legal gives a rundown of what protections there are from discrimination under federal, state, and local laws.

Federal Civil Rights Laws, Bullying, and Youth

Bullying is unfortunately a large part of adolescence, especially when it comes to members of the LGBT group. This website provides legal information about bullying in relation to sexual orientation or gender.

Answers for LGBT Prospective Foster and Adoptive Parents

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, specifically the Child Welfare Information Gateway, offers help for those who identify as gay or transgender and are looking to adopt a child.

Addressing Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Discrimination in Federal Civilian Employment (PDF)

In this document, legal guidance in reference to employment rights, protections, and responsibilities is addressed.

Law Enforcement and Transgender Communities

This website provides information on improving relations and understanding when it comes to law enforcement and legal matters between authoritative figures and transgender individuals.

11 Facts About Gay Rights

Find some basic facts about laws that affect LGBT rights here.

Know Your Rights: Laws Protecting Students

This page looks at how federal law protects the rights of LGBT students and gay-straight alliance groups.

Parents, Families, and Friends of Lesbians and Gays

Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (or PFLAG) identifies a number of legal issues that LGBT members face as well as information on how to begin changing these problems.

Map of State Laws and Policies

The Human Rights Campaign allows supporters or members of the LGBT community to search for either the laws and policies of their state or which states have a particular law or policy using this map.

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