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Lilah J Sutphen

Divorce and separation Attorney at San Francisco, CA

4.6   9 reviews
  • Licensed for 13 years
    State CA
    Acquired 2010
    Active No misconduct found

We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.

About Lilah

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DeLacey, Riebel and Shindell LLP
505 Montgomery Street, 7th Floor
San Francisco, CA, 94111

Divorce lawyers nearby


4.6 / 5.0
  9 customer reviews
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Posted by Dean | September 9, 2016
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Relax and sleep well, you're in good hands.
I had been struggling with my divorce for several years until Lilah stepped in. Lilah immediately put me at ease because I knew I was in the hands of a pro. What I liked most about Lilah is that she formulated a strategy for me. She gave me my options and explained the pros and cons of each so that I was still ultimately in control. She was straight forward not only with the strengths of my case but also equally blunt about my weaknesses. She refused to blow smoke up my skirt allowing me to have false confidence in the unlikely. I really respected that. Lilah was also understanding of my financial situation by giving me advice to help me save money instead of cranking up the expenses as many attorneys do. When it came time to put the case together, Lilah's expertise was obvious. She overwhelmed the other party with a clear and logical case that was supported with facts and legal precedence. It was unarguable. And it would've been an impossible feat by myself. I am very happy with the results Lilah got for me.
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Posted by Janell | August 28, 2016
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
At first I was alone- I was petrified...
I never planned on divorcing, so I had no clue how to even start the process and I felt quite overwhelmed. My first meeting with Lilah consisted of me learning a ton of complex details in words and explanations I could actually understand. Lilah took the time to explain the journey through divorce towards amiable co-existance and co-parenting. Lilah took my concerns seriously and respected my desire for harmonious dynamics between me and my ex. The forms and explanations she drafted and submitted were excellent in form and content- she really knows her business. The dialogue she gave me to use in court came in handy and helped me gain and maintain some agency in the courtroom. Lilah accepted and respected my priorities, so my divorce wasn't about money and acrimony, it was about learning the process and making the best decisions for my kids. Lilah always kept my kids in mind. She is an expert in her field and a true people person as well. I would recommend her whole heartedly to family and friends and you.
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Posted by Jen | January 1, 2014
Excellent Lawyer!
We are a lesbian couple starting a family and Lilah was extremely helpful in drafting a known sperm donor contract for my partner and I. We were not certain that we even needed to have a contract written because we really love and trust our known donor, but we are so glad that we decided to do it! Lilah gave us a questionnaire to help prompt any questions that we might have or concerns that had not occurred to us yet. It was an excellent opportunity to really discuss all of the complicated issues that may arise and determine in advance how we would want to handle them. Rather than being an uncomfortable process, it really put all of us at ease, especially due to Lilah's excellent facilitation. She had an amazing turn-around time with drafting the contract and accommodating all of our revisions until it was just right. We refer all of our friends who are starting this process to Lilah - she is great!
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Posted by anonymous | June 26, 2013
Smooth sailing!
I came to Lilah to get a divorce. My ex and I had agreed on everything for the most part. Lilah was very informative in our initial meeting, I walked away knowing what to expect and with various "homework" assignments meant to get my divorce started. She was quick with drafting a settlement agreement that needed few changes to satisfy my ex. Lilah's attention and care made getting a divorce go smoother than I expected.
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Posted by anonymous | May 29, 2013
Knowledgeable Family Law & Child Custody attorney
Lilah assisted in my legal representation which went to trial to prevent my ex-partner from moving 300 miles away with our son. Lilah kept her poise with obstinate and less-than-professional opposing counsel, and she provided me and my family invaluable emotional support throughout the trial. Most importantly, she was a doggone good attorney in a complicated case and we prevailed. I recommend her to anyone with a family law issue, especially if children are involved.
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Posted by anonymous | May 23, 2013
Superb Attorney!
My partner and I made the decision to use our gay male friend as the sperm donor to conceive our first child. We were referred to Lilah’s firm for drafting of a sperm donor contract. At our initial consultation with her and a partner in the firm we were given a thorough explanation of the contractual process and the opportunity to clearly and thoroughly explain what we wanted the relationship between ourselves, our child, and our donor-friend to be. The contract was drafted, negotiations were made so everyone was 100% happy with it, and it was all done efficiently and seamlessly. This could have been a very awkward, emotion-ridden process. Lilah’s thorough and quick responses to our incessant questions, as well as her suggested clauses for the contract were much-appreciated, invaluable, and with that, she comes highly recommended by me and my partner.
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Posted by Ann | May 8, 2013
Excellent Legal Representation and Emotional Support
Lilah provided excellent legal and emotional support as my partner and I completed the legal process of forming our "alternative family" with the use of a surrogate and the completion of a pre-birth order. We were confident that our parenting rights were secure prior to the birth of our beloved child. This made for a stress free environment as we prepared to be become new parents. I strongly recommend Lilah. She provided excellent legal representation and support.
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Posted by anonymous | May 6, 2013
My partner and I married in the short window of time it was legal in California in 2008. After we married we moved to a state where same-sex marriage was not recognized. Our relationship ended and we realized we couldn't get divorced in our state because the state didn't recognize the marriage. We didn't know what to do! Lilah and her firm were referred to me from an old California friend. After my first phone call with Lilah I felt much better. She methodically explained the same-sex marriage legal patchwork process to me in a way that made sense. She completed my divorce seamlessly, efficiently, and completely remotely from CA. I recommend Lilah. She made the emotional divorce process as "easy" as it can be. She gave me emotional sensitivity as well a truly professional representation.
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Posted by anonymous | March 2, 2015
Beware this attorney
I hired this attorney from a well-known law firm in San Francisco at the recommendation of a new friend. I was newly separated at a vulnerable time in my life. Lilah seemed confident and well spoken. However, she filed my case incorrectly with the court (which now has to be fixed), her firm over-billed, she did not provide any strategy or direction for my case (I came up with most of the strategy from the advice of friends) and she raised her voice to me several times, and was kinder to opposing counsel than she was to me -- and now I see why. She was looking for another job while her own firm dissolved. Beware this attorney. At the very least, she lacks the experience to handle a complicated family law case. Hire a certified family law specialist instead.
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AVVO RATING 9.5 (Superb)

Work Experience

  • Attorney
  • Heath Law Group, P.C.
  • 2014 - Present
  • Attorney
  • Heath-Newton LLP
  • 2013 - Present
  • Associate Attorney
  • Wald & Thorndal, P.C.
  • 2012 - 2013
  • Post-Bar Law Clerk/Contract Attorney
  • Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd, LLP
  • 2010 - 2012
  • Certified Legal Intern
  • San Diego District Attorney
  • 2009 - 2010
View all work experience


  • Thomas Jefferson School of Law
  • JD - Juris Doctor
  • 2010
  • UC Davis
  • BA - Bachelor of Arts
  • 2007


  • Bay Area Lawyers for Individual Freedom (BALIF)
  • Board of Directors
  • 2011 - Present
  • Queen's Bench Bar Association
  • 2011 - Present
  • Bar Association of San Francisco
  • 2011 - Present
  • National LGBT Bar Association
  • 2007 - Present
View all associations

Languages Spoken

  • English

Honors and Awards

  • Client's Choice Award
  • Avvo
  • 2013
  • First Place Overall Female Finisher
  • Silver Strand Half-Marathon
  • 2010
  • First Place Overall Female Finisher
  • American River Parkway Half-Marathon
  • 2010
  • First Place Female Age Division
  • Tri-City Carlsbad Half-Marathon
  • 2010
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Speaking Engagements

  • International Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers
  • Surrogacy
  • 2016
  • Webinar
  • An Overview of California Adoption
  • 2013
  • Lavender Law 2013
  • Career Services and Job Search Strategies for Law Students
  • 2013
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Attorney endorsements

Received (13)
Given (6)
Endorse Lilah
Family Attorney | Jun 07
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer."
Family Attorney | Nov 03
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Ms. Sutphen appears to be a talented attorney and any client would be in good hands with her as counsel. I endorse this lawyer."
Unknown Attorney | Jul 31
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Top-notch attorney. Highly respected in the legal community."
Family Attorney | May 25
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Lilah is smart, dedicated, and personable – all great qualities for a family lawyer. I would not hesitate to refer one of my clients in need of family law assistance to Lilah."
Family Attorney | May 23
Relationship: Co-worker
"Lilah is an excellent attorney and an expert in divorce, and custody cases. She understands the needs of the clients and is very focused. Highly recommended!"
Family Attorney | May 23
Relationship: Co-worker
"Lilah is a truly fantastic family lawyer. Child custody and divorce cases are never easy, and Lilah handles them with grace. She knows the law and she knows people – an excellent combination for a family attorney. Very highly recommended!"
Family Attorney | May 22
Relationship: Supervised lawyer
"Lilah is an exceptionally tough, detail orientated and intelligent attorney. She never ceases to impress. Highly recommended. I endorse this lawyer."
Family Attorney | May 22
Relationship: Co-worker
"Lilah is a fantastic attorney - she understands what's needed, and uses her knowledge to get the best results for his clients. She’s a tough negotiator, but always keeps her client’s ultimate best interests in mind. She gets the job done, which can be a real challenge in the family law realm. Highly recommended."
Family Attorney | May 22
Relationship: Supervised lawyer
"Lilah keeps up on current changes in law and pays attention to details. I would not hesitate to recommend Lilah who are in need of a family law attorney."
Family Attorney | May 22
Relationship: Supervised lawyer
"Most lawyers are smart. The best are also thoughtful. Lilah is both, which helps her excel in what can be a very challenging field of law. I recommend Lilah to anyone facing a challenging family law situation."
Family Attorney | May 15
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I would feel comfortable referring family law related matters to Lilah based on my knowledge of her legal experience and reputation. Lilah is well-respected in the Bay Area legal community and is known for her unique experience in the areas of LGBT and non-traditional family law."
Family Attorney | May 10
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Lilah is exceptional. Lilah is knowledgeable, responsive, trustworthy and friendly. Lilah can make people feel comfortable in uncomfortable situations and can handle any challenge put in front of her. Lilah is experienced beyond her years and has conducted numerous trials. I never hesitate to recommend Lilah to any and all clients with family law questions or issues. Simply stated, she is fantastic."
Family Attorney | May 02
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Lilah is a first-class attorney with impeccable standards of professionalism. She has a heart of gold and makes clients feel comfortable in the midst of what is often the most tumultuous time in their lives. I always refer clients and friends in need of a family law attorney to Lilah. If you want someone you can trust to be a passionate advocate for you, Lilah's the best choice."
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