I have had an interest in helping families navigate the difficult issues of divorce, support and custody since long before I began practicing family law. Perhaps it was my background in psychology, or some of my volunteer efforts, but I have always seen the need for family law practitioners to be sensitive to the needs of their clients, throughout what will most likely be a very difficult chapter in their lives.
Even an amicable separation that its mediated by the parties or collaborated with trained professionals, these matters are emotionally trying and attorneys need to be sensitive to that. After obtaining my Bachelors in Psychology, I devoted much of my studies in law school to family law. Upon graduation, I was awarded the American Association of Matrimonial Lawyers Award for Excellence in the Area of Family Law.
Since graduating from law school, I have focused my practice exclusively on family law, joining Gentile, Horoho & Avalli in 2005. I was named a Super Lawyer Rising Star in 2010, 2013, and 2014 an honor bestowed upon only a handful of attorney who have displayed excellence in the area of family law.
I have found in the decade or so that I have been practicing family law, that litigation, and the adversarial process in general, is not for everyone. In an effort to meet the needs of my clients and future clients, I completed a mediation training approved by the Association for Conflict Resolution which was geared towards Divorce and Family Conflict mediation.
In addition I have completed the training necessary to be a collaborative attorney and assist clients using the collaborative process through CLASP and the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals.
In family law mediation, instead of going to Court and relying upon the rulings of a Judge or Hearing Officer, the parties jointly retain a mediator, who assists them in working towards a solution to their domestic relations matters.
In the collaborative process, the parties agree from the beginning that they won’t go to Court. Instead, the parties retain collaboratively trained attorneys and work with collaboratively trained mental health professionals and financial planners who assist the parties to facilitate an amicable resolution of the issues that they have raised during the collaborative process.
I have found that many people are embracing these methods which allow them to have direct input into the resolution while still having third parties assist in guiding them there. While not for everyone, for the right individuals, mediation or collaborative law can be a faster and more cost effective means of resolving their domestic relations matters, assuming that both parties are committed to working with one another.
Regardless of whether a client wishes to pursue litigation, mediation, or collaboration I strive to be sensitive to their needs and attentive to their requests. I believe that an attorney should help bring a level of transparency to the legal system for their clients. My clients should not only know what is going on in their case, but should be comfortable that they understand what each step is and what that means in real world terms. If you are looking for that type of representation, please feel free to contact me.
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