Jill Mullins-Cannon has been practicing law since 2009. She has been distinguished in her career, receiving the Recent Graduate Award from the University of Washington School of Law. Most recently, in 2017, Jill was named one of Best LGBT Lawyers Under 40 by the National LGBT Bar Association.
Jill is committed to access to justice. Since law school, Jill has helped put on panels for the public and attorneys on issues impacting the LGBTQ community and students on issues of bullying and discrimination.
One of Jill’s nerdy passion projects is being on the Pattern Forms Committee and Domestic Relations Subcommittee. Pattern forms are available through the court’s website. These forms are used by attorneys and people who represent themselves (pro se parties). The committee and subcommittee are filled with people who diligently work to make the forms accessible. The forms are one of the most tangible access to justice tools out there as they help people understand all of the requirements involved in their action. Check out JELS legal resources page for the other useful tools if you are representing yourself, or if you have an attorney and want to feel like you better understand the process. Check out the nonlegal resources page for other useful information.
Prior to founding Justice & Equality Legal Services, PLLC (“JELS”), Jill did contract work for Patricia Novotny doing family law appeals. Prior to working on family law appeals, Jill worked on the trial level, first as a Deputy Prosecuting Attorney in Benton County, establishing paternity, enforcing child support obligations, and modifying child support and then at McKinley Irvin, doing a broad spectrum of family law cases.
Jill founded JELS to pursue her passions, first with regard to the issue of discrimination within the educational system and second with regard to non-traditional families.
Jill feels like the information for students and parents to advocate for themselves is technically available but often obscured by school district websites. As such, Jill works on including information about what resources are available and what you would expect if you school were following the policies and procedures. Information regarding schools is available here.
Jill is also passionate about protecting LGBTQ families. Jill does confirmatory parentage actions in lieu of adoptions for parents who qualify under the statute (i.e., married same-sex couples). Jill also provides basic estate planning services to help protect all different kinds of families (step-families, polyfamilies, blended families, cohabiting couples who do not wish to marry, etc.). Nontraditional families need intentional planning because the default laws often do not address their needs and exclude important members of family from inheriting or making important decisions.
University of Washington School of Law
Awards and Recognition
- 2017 Best LGBT Lawyers Under 40
- University of Washington Recent Graduate Award, 2012
- Rising Star by Super Lawyers
Memberships and Affiliations
- American Bar Association, Solo and Small Practice Section
- Member, King County Bar Association, Family Law Section
- Member, King County Bar Association, Appellate Law Section
- Member, Mentor & Volunteer, QLAW Association
- (Prior) Member, Washington State Legislative Bullying Workgroup (Workgroup concluded its work)
- Member, Washington State Bar Association, LGBTQ Section
- Member, Washington State Bar Association, Solo Section
- Washington State Courts – Washington Pattern Forms
- Past President and Board Member, QLAW Foundation
Publications, Presentations, and Speaking Engagements
LGBTQ-Affirmative School Environments, Clinical Strategies to Support LGBTQ Youth Conference, June 2017
LGBTQ Student Rights, GLESN conference, presented on behalf of the ACLU, April 2017
Religious Freedom in a Pluralistic America, Evergreen College, Olympia, February 2017
LGBTQ Rights Post-Election: Protecting Ourselves and Our Community, Town Hall, Seattle, December 2016.
What Will a Trump Led America Look Like? Columbia Badger Forum, Richland, November 18, 2016
The End of a Relationship through Death or Divorce: Special Considerations for Same-Sex Couples and the Importance of Committed Intimate Relationships, WSBA CLE, June 29, 2016
Lingering Inequalities: Family Law Issues in a Post-DOMA World – A Presentation for the Division of Child Support Annual Claims Officer Workshop, Presented with Shayna Isreal, September 2015
Beyond Marriage Relationships: Property and Family in the Nontraditional Relationships, Lavender Law, Chicago, August 2015
The Continuing Fight for Full LGBTQ Equality, QLaw Foundation, Town Hall, July 2015
Whose Religious Rights? Columbia Badger Forum, Richland, April 24, 2015
Annual Event CLE ~ When Laws Conflict: Intersection of State, Tribal, and Federal Laws in Washington State, K&L Gates, Seattle, October 10, 2014.
Family Law in Washington, Practitioner Perspective and LGBT Issues, Presenter, University of Washington School of Law, Family Law Class, March 2014
LGBT Rights and Family Law in a Post-DOMA World, Presenter with David Ward, WSBA SOGILI Section and QLaw Foundation CLE, December 2013
LGBT Legal Issues, Recent Developments in Estate Planning and Administration, Tacoma-Pierce County Bar Association, Tacoma, WA, November 2013
LGBT Family Law – Parentage, Family Law Section Part I The Parentage Act, Presenter with David Ward, Tacoma-Pierce County Bar, Tacoma, WA, October 2013
LGBT Family Law Issues, Presenter, 2013 Family Law Section Midyear Meeting and Seminar: Revitalizing Your Practice, Yakima, WA, June 2013
Same-Sex Couples in Washington: DOMA, Marriage, Dissolution & Estate Planning, Presenter, Tacoma, 2013
Jill Mullins and Jennie Laird, Practice Tips for Representing Same-Sex Couple Headed Families, Washington State Bar News, February 2013
Marriage Equality Explained, Panelist, Town Hall Presentation co-sponsored by various LGBT organizations, December 2012.
Jill Mullins, Lisa DuFour, and Kim Schnuelle Working with Limited-English Clients, Family Law Matters, King County Bar Bulletin, November 2012
Family Law Issues for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Clients: Family Formation and Dissolution, Presenter, Benton Franklin Legal Aid Society, October 2012.
Uniform Parentage Act Update, Presenter,McKinley Irvin Family Law CLE series, October 2012.
Title IX Hot Topics, Presenter, Title IX at 40: Past Present and Promise of Gender Equality in Education, October 2012
GLESN TriCities GSA Summit, Presenter, Bullying “Know Your Rights” presentation for students
Kennewick School Board, Attended Kennewick School Board Meetings, speaking against the ban on Gay-Straight Alliances and for compliance with the revised law on bullying. Meetings with the ACLU to discuss potential litigation. February through November 2011
Community Speaking, Handford High School GSA presentation about legal issues impacting LGBT students; Presentation to Columbia Basin College Psychology course about the process of coming out, 2011.
Pro Bono, Low Bono: Getting Legal Experience & Providing Access to Justice Panel, WAMBAC Statewide Diversity Conference, June 25, 2010
Serving Clients Respectfully, Panelist, Celebrate Pro Bono CLE, October 30, 2009
QLaw Foundation: About Us and About Referendum 71, University of Washington School of Law Outlaws Meeting, October 12, 2009 and Thinking Queerly: Community Workshops on LGBT Issues, October 10, 2009
Legal Clinics from Seattle to New York: In Your Neighborhoods and in Your Schools, Panel, 2009 National LGBT Bar Association Annual Conference, Brooklyn, NY, September 11, 2009
Increased Need For Pro Bono Legal Services: Roles And Responsibilities, Panel, WAMBAC Statewide Diversity Conference, June 12, 2009
Jill Mullins and Hugh Spitzer, The Role of the State in Washington Marriage: Same Sex, Different Rights, Washington State Bar News, September 2007