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Maria Testa

Family Attorney at Philadelphia, PA

5.0   20 reviews

Licensed for 14 years

Virtual consultation available

Free consultation

About Maria

Learn Maria’s areas of practice.

As a member of the Pennsylvania Bar, founding Attorney Maria N. Testa has dedicated her practice to resolving family law matters. A skilled litigator, Maria is known for her tenacity and effectiveness in the courtroom. Additionally, she is well known by judges and practitioners alike for her practical approach to negotiating and litigating family law matters. She is strongly committed to providing pro bono legal services to her disabled and low-income clients who are in critical need of legal help. Maria is a member of the Bar Association, the Pennsylvania Bar Association, and the Philadelphia Bar Association.

Client's Choice 2014
Client's Choice

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Licensed for 14 years
State PA
Status Active
Acquired 2008
Updated 12/04/2022

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

Contact Maria

Testa & Pagnanelli, LLC
1500 JFK Blvd
Suite 1020
Philadelphia, PA, 19102
Testa & Pagnanelli, LLC
325 Swede Street
Suite 201
Norristown, PA, 19401
Testa & Pagnanelli, LLC
150 N. Radnor Chester Road
F-200
Radnor, PA, 19087
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Reviews

5.0 / 5.0
  20 customer reviews
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Client's Choice 2014
Client's Choice
Maria received a significant number of 4+ stars in 2014
Posted by Beth | November 19, 2022
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Beth Reinhardt, MSW
I was so lucky to have Maria for the second half of my divorce. She was not only strategic and ethical, but she kept me calm and was able to help me decipher noise and nonsense from reality. She also was able to handle my ex-husband's contentious counsel in a professional, yet efficient manner. Maria is trauma informed and made me feel at ease during the most tenuous times. I work in the field of domestic violence and have already recommended to her to many clients. Finding an honest and professional family lawyer can be a daunting task, but I lucked out with her. Thanks, Maria!
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Posted by Trina | July 8, 2022
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Best family law attorney ever!
5 stars does not even cover how outstanding Maria Testa was in my cases! I came to her in dire straits when my daughter had been taken by her father. Maria jumped into my case head on and slayed in court. She is a force of nature! She is extremely knowledgeable of the law and rules of court. She is very responsive to her clients. I cannot express to you how important that is! She went above and beyond the call of duty. She offered support and guidance when I needed it most. She won the first case which was an emergency hearing and then she won my custody trial! She is phenomenal! Her staff is also wonderful and responsive. There really isn’t enough words to describe how intelligent, knowledgeable, personable she is and her expertise is off the charts. If you need a family law lawyer look no further! Maria is who you need!
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Posted by Natalie | November 30, 2021
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Above and beyond
I have a very complex PFA and jurisdiction/custody case. Maria was responsive, informative, supportive, and effective! I would highly recommend her if you are dealing with a family court case in Philadelphia.
Posted by Peter | August 4, 2021
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Everything I'd expect in a top rate lawyer
Consulted with her for a child custody case. First thing she did was review all the facts with me, then when discovering I actually lived in a different county told me the best thing was to get the case transferred to my county...after which she would recommend me getting a different lawyer from that county!! She did that and she DID remove herself from the case afterwards. She put herself out of a job in my best interests! Hire this woman, she looks out for you!!
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Posted by Kate | November 19, 2020
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
PERFECTION
Maria represented my husband in a brutal custody dispute with multiple complicated factors that kept changing as the case went on, even after it was ruled upon. Her knowledge of law, family dynamics, and the court system are absolutely unparallelled. She was exceptionally responsive to communication, particularly in the midst of a pandemic while everything was changing so quickly, other mere humans couldn't keep up. She possesses a brilliant legal mind, coupled with a great sense of humor and is without a doubt the most compassionate lawyer I have ever encountered (to the party she represents obviously). Her arguments in court deserve a mic drop every time and she was able to expose a typically very skilled liar during cross-examination seemily easily. Her legal advice proved excellent every step of the way. She should cost 5x what she does (but I am beyond grateful she doesn't!), we are so lucky to have hired her.
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Posted by Joan | July 27, 2017
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
The Best
Maria Testa has been my attorney since 2014 when she handled my divorce. From our initial consultation, I knew she was doggedly determined, highly intelligent, irreproachably honest, and most importantly, she knew family law. These were the qualities I wanted in an attorney. In addition, she was empathetic, kind and always responsive to queries and concerns, whether day, night or weekends. I consider her a friend to this day. I have referred several friends to her, the highest form of praise, with stellar results. Yo anyone seeking legal yelp in this area, I highly recommend Maria Testa of Testa &Pagnanelli, LLC. Client Joan
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Posted by Jay | July 25, 2017
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
My Hero
Maria has been in my corner for two separate incidents involving the custody of my children. She is friendly, caring, and fiercely fights for you. I only wish she practiced in my hometown of Baltimore County to help me moving forward. She is absolutely wonderful, you cannot go wrong in choosing her to represent you.
Posted by Marta | July 25, 2017
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Amazing Advocacy!
I worked with Maria Testa of Testa and Pagnanelli from October 2015 to March 2017 for my custody proceedings in Philadelphia. From my initial consultation, I was convinced that I had made the right choice. Maria was knowledgeable, calm, and very sympathetic. Being a mother, herself, she really understood how to combine the human side of these proceedings with the legal side. In addition, Maria's communication and organization is unparalleled. She would reply to every email I sent (and there were many!) within hours if not minutes. No question was too small. She truly understood my side of these proceedings, and, moreover, knew how to turn my hopes into actionable motions that gave results. I would recommend Maria Testa and Testa and Pagnanelli to anyone and want to thank Maria for her dedication to me and my daughter.
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Posted by anonymous | June 23, 2016
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Best Litigator EVER!!! My family's savior!
I can't say enough good things about Maria Testa and Testa & Pagnanelli, LLC. I came to her as a down on my luck dad in the middle of a multi-year custody proceeding, with the deck stacked firmly against me, a ton of unfounded, untrue allegations and a more than contentious former spouse standing between me and fair custody/parenting time of our four year old son. Not only was she fair and knowledgeable, she took the time to explain the process to me, kept me involved in the entire proceeding and approached the entire ordeal with all the seriousness and veracity you would expect from a high priced team of attorneys. Strategically, her mind is like that of a cerebral assassin. That example may be too much or go over people's heads, but I'm just so ridiculously happy with the results I received due largely in part to her impeccable legal prowess and unwavering commitment and dedication to not only her clients but her pursuit of justice. If you have one lawyer to call please make sure that it's Maria Testa at Testa & Pagnanelli, LLC. She is truly a life saver and a God send.
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Posted by Farrell | May 19, 2015
The Best Ever - And I mean that!!
I was going through the most nasty custody battle. I was at my wits end, nervous, scared and didn't know where to turn. My son's mother refused to let him see me even though I was paying child support faithfully. My fiancée at the time, and now my wife, found Maria via the web and set up a consultation. From the day I stepped in her office I knew that everything had taken a turn for the better. I'm not going to go into all the details, there's not enough words I can type, but I will say that she's knows her job and performs it very well. I was stun at her transformation inside the court room. She gets it DONE!! Now I have my son 3 out of 4 weekends, all summer, holidays are split and I've even established a workable relationship with his mother! Maria is awesome! And oh did I mention she's always there for her clients! She answered my calls at night. THANKS MARIA
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Posted by Andrew | March 24, 2015
Top notch representation
Maria is refreshingly fierce in court - she zealously, steadfastly and most importantly, SUCCESSFULLY protected my interests in a very nasty divorce. She came well-recommended by my general counsel when I was faced with a divorce - and that recommendation was well justified. Her communication is excellent, often I got a reply within minutes of emailing her. She was always willing to answer questions, offer constructive advice on dealing with any issue that arose. She made it her business to be well-informed about every aspect of my case. Maria excels at research and brings an encyclopedic knowledge of the law to the table. At every turn of my divorce and custody case, she developed solid and well-considered strategies for dealing with the other side and she and her team handled every situation with finesse, professionalism and acumen. She is aa suberb legal writer and a tiger in the courtroom - a consumate professional. Additionally, while Maria is always a professional jurist, she also gets to know and care about her clients and the peculiarities of each childrens' case. This is a quality that not many attorney's have and I really came to appreciate it in Maria. Lastly but far from least, Maria's fees are extraordinarily reasonable - especially when you consider the level of service and skill she provides. I have paid other attorneys far more for far less results. Her retainers are both affordable and flexible, which is very helpful while fighting a divorce. All in all, she is a five star attorney you can hire at a three star price and I recommend her and her team without any reservation whatsoever. If you need a lawyer to help you in a divorce or custody dispute, Maria is definitely the one to call.
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Posted by Jerry | November 13, 2014
Custody success
My ex-wife tried to keep our two girls away from me despite a generous amount of child support that I paid to her. I am a professional and I do work long hours but I believe that I am still entitled to have time with my daughters. Ms. Testa took over my case and within 2 months, I had joint custody. I am very happy with the outcome of her negotiations.
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Posted by Lucy | November 13, 2014
Great Family Lawyer!
Maria - I recently went through a very difficult divorce. I have 3 children and I needed as much help as possible with them since my ability to earn money is limited. Ms. Testa was an amazing advocate. She made the right moves at the right times and although I am sad to be a divorced Mom, my kids and I are financially secure and we have Ms. Testa to thank for that. I highly recommend her.
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Posted by anonymous | November 5, 2014
Excellent Attorney!
I hired Maria after many failings of my previous attorney. Maria was very easy to talk to and was available to consult with me and my family even before I hired her! She had a good understanding of my custody case and was very sincere in her approach to my case. She explained everything to me in plain English, not legal terms. She made sure I understood everything every step of the way. Maria was and is always approachable, on time and very organized. I was able to communicate with her via email, cell phone, text message or at her office at any time of the day, night and even on weekends! She is always very accessible and dilligent in her work, even though she has three young children of her own. Maria took the time to review my case thoroughly and knew exactly what plan of attack was required. She is an excellent brief writer and is fired up in the courtroom, but still very professional. She is an excellent trial attorney who will get you what you want. She also is very emotionally connected and can feel your pain as well as your children's. This is a quality that not many attorney's have, but Maria certainly does. Maria was very reasonable with fees as well. She understands that not everyone can pay "an arm and a leg" for excellent representation. She was very flexible with the retainer I paid her and does not have a problem discussing her bills. She is very reasonably priced for a top notch attorney! Maria is like family, and excellent attorney with a wealth of knowledge and I recommend her!
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Posted by anonymous | November 3, 2014
Worth Every Penny!
I retained Maria Testa nearly two years ago for both custody and child support. I met with Maria for a consultation and knew within the first ten minutes of speaking to her that she was the right attorney for me. She has a wonderful personality and is very easy to talk to. She takes time to explain legal terms and legal process' in a clear and concise manner. She has proven herself to be knowledgeable and trustworthy. I have had three custody hearings and two support hearings. My custody and support battle was stressful and emotionally trying for me. She supported me the whole way through . I was impressed with how well-known and well-respected she is with all staff at the court house. There were many layers to my custody/support cases and in every aspect she was there to offer her expertise. She was ALWAYS available to me. If I needed to come to her office to discuss any new and urgent occurences she fit me in at my convenience. Anytime I emailed, texted, or called she responded promptly no matter the day or time. Maria was always professional, knowledgable and organized and having her by my side in what was the scariest time of my life was reassuring. In the courtroom, she is a bull! Not obnoxious like some lawyers can be, but aggressive in the most professional manner. With Maria you get quality along with afforadability. In comparison to what many other lawyers cost, she is affordable and allowed for me to pay a lump some and then pay off the rest of my balance in a way that was affordable for me. The scariest feeling in the world is to be entangled in a legal nightmare, especially when it involves your children.. I felt at all times protected and safe. I have and will continue to recommend Maria in the highest regard to anyone needing legal representation. She has surpassed all expectations!
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Posted by Michael | November 1, 2014
Excellent Lawyer
My experience with Mrs. Maria Testa was great. She was recommended to me by a close friend. She represented this close friend in a child custody case and she helped him win the case and obtain primary physical custody. I met with her on multiple occasions throughout the process and she was always very responsive and always got back to me through e-mail or by my personal cell phone to alleviate all of my questions and concerns. Not to mention, she helped me win primary physical custody of my son and I have nothing but good things to say about Maria Testa. I would recommend her to anyone dealing with family court cases.
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Posted by AJP | October 31, 2014
WONDERFUL AGGRESSIVE RESPONSIVE ATTORNEY
APPROXIMATELY 1 YEAR AGO I RETAINED MRS. TESTA'S SERVICE WITH REGARD TO A CUSTODY MATTER, AS A PRIOR ATTORNEY HAD FAILED ME AND THE OUTCOME OF MY FIRST HEARING WAS A COMPLETE DISASTER WITH NO HOPE OF RECTIFYING SAME. MRS. TESTA APPEARED AT MY SECOND HEARING AS A "PITBULL" SHE PRESENTED ALL FACTS AND ARGUMENTS PRECISELY WITH A SUCCESSFULL OUTCOME THUS FAR. THROUGHOUT THE COURSE OF THIS YEAR MRS. TESTA HAS COMMUNICATED WITH ME IN EVERY MANNER AVAILABLE, BY WAY OF PHONE EMAIL AND TEXT MESSAGE. SHE HAS ADDRESSED AND PROPERLY RESPONDED TO MY EVERY INQUIRY AND CONCERN. SHE HAS COACHED AND COUNSELED ME THOUGHOUT THE COURSE OF THE YEAR SO THAT WE MAY RECTIFY THE INITIAL FAILED HEARING WHICH PRODUCED AN UNFAVORABLE OUTCOME. I HAVE NO DOUBT THAT AT MY UPCOMING PROCEEDING SHE WILL DOMINATE OPPOSING COUNSEL AND HAVE MY CHILD'S BEST INTEREST AT HEART. IN ADDITION, AS A SINGLE MOTHER, THE COST OF AN ATTORNEY IS NOT EASY TO AFFORD. MRS. TESTA WORKED WITH ME WITH REGARD TO HER PAYMENT FOR SERVICES WHICH, I MUST SAY, WAS A "GREAT RATE", AND I AM THANKFUL TO HER.
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Posted by anonymous | October 10, 2014
Great Lawyer
Maria handled my custody trial and did a fantastic job. Aside from being extremely likable and having a wonderful personality, she is an excellent litigator! We had a semi-protracted custody trial and she was well prepared and completely dominated in the courtroom. She is really good! Her rates are also very reasonable in comparison to the many attorneys I spoke with before retaining her services. I highly recommend Maria Testa and her firm.
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Posted by Kevin | May 28, 2014
Trustworthy Lawyer that knows her stuff
I needed a divorce and looked over the internet as much as I could to find someone that was affordable and yet knew what they were doing. Maria Testa was the first Lawyer I would ever say that I Trust. Maria handled every aspect of the divorce professionally and as I asked her to do. When the Ex wouldn't sign the papers as she asked them to be drawn up; I asked Maria to have her served and everything went very smoothly. I would say what I was charged was too low for the services provided. I am now looking into adoption and the first lawyer I thought of after 5 years is her. I trust her and that is big to say of any attorney. She is very knowledgeable and knows the courts.
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Posted by Heather | August 24, 2013
Debunking the previous review
Let me begin by refuting the other review on this site for this lawyer. It was NOT written by a client of Ms.Testa; but rather by my immoral ex-husband! As stated by him, he has set out to defame Ms. Testa for simply being a MASTER at her job!!! So now he has taken to the Internet, searching MY lawyer's name and conjuring up false reviews. Please ignore them!! The FACTS are as follows: I secured Ms. Testa as my divorce attorney after strong recommendation from a previous client of hers. Immediately, upon meeting her for the first time, I knew I wanted to secure her as my legal representative. For her firm's reputation and high caliber of performance, I found her to be more than fairly priced. Not only is she timely and responsive, but she is well-known and respected in the court system. She is articulate and detailed with every piece of paperwork she has filed for me, and she takes time to explain things minus all the legal jargon. Her knowledge of divorce law is impeccable, and when I've gone to court with her, you can see the good rapport she has with fellow lawyers, court personnel and judges. I should also mention that her success rate has got to be amongst the best because she has won every argument I've had in court and I've been the defendant! My mind is at ease with her as my attorney. I HIGHLY recommend Ms. Testa if you need a thorough professional!
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Cost

Rates
  • Free Consultation 60 minutes
  • Retainer Sometimes
Payment methods
Cash, Check, Credit Card

Resume

AVVO RATING 10.0 (Superb)

Work Experience

  • Owner/Attorney
  • Testa & Pagnanelli, LLC
  • 2009 - Present
  • Owner
  • Law Office of Maria Testa, LLC
  • 2008 - 2009

Education

  • Seton Hall University School of Law
  • JD - Juris Doctor
  • 2006
  • University of Rochester
  • BA - Bachelor of Arts
  • 2003

Legal Cases

  • Grandparent Custody
  • Appealed in Superior Court

Associations

  • The Nicholas Cipriani American Inn of Court
  • Member
  • 2010 - Present
  • American Bar Association
  • Member
  • 2009 - Present
  • Pennsylvania Bar Association
  • Member
  • 2009 - Present
  • Philadelphia Bar Association
  • Member
  • 2009 - Present
View all associations

Languages Spoken

  • English

Awards

  • Rising Star
  • SuperLawyers
  • 2020
  • Rising Star
  • SuperLawyers
  • 2019
  • Rising Star
  • SuperLawyers
  • 2018
  • Rising Star
  • SuperLawyers
  • 2017
  • Rising Star
  • SuperLawyers
  • 2016
  • 5.0 out of 5.0 Client Rating
  • Martindale-Hubbell
  • 2016
  • Rising Star
  • SuperLawyers
  • 2015
  • Woman of the Year
  • National Association of Women in Business
  • 2013
  • Philadelphia VIP Brennan Award
  • Philadelphia VIP
  • 2012
View all awards

Publications

Speaking Engagements

  • Practice and Procedure in Custody Matters
  • Proper Practice and Procedure of Family Law
  • 2019
  • Pennsylvania Family Law Practice for Paralegals
  • Enforcing and Modifying Family Law Orders and Decrees
  • 2019
  • Philadelphia court of common Pleas
  • Panelist for Discussion on Complex Custody Cases involving children with special needs
  • 2017
  • Pennsylvania Bar Association
  • PBI Course for Attorneys
  • 2017
  • Philadelphia VIP's Summer Pro Bono Program - Panel
  • Pro Bono Service
  • 2015
  • How to Start Your Own Successful Business
  • Entrepreneurship
  • 2014
  • Art Fennell Reports
  • Support
  • 2010
View all speaking engagements

Attorney endorsements

Received (3)
Given (3)
Endorse Maria
Family Attorney | May 08
Relationship: Co-worker
"Maria is an excellent attorney and a great asset to her clients. She is very generous with her time and extremely knowledgable. Anyone who hires Maria is making a great choice."
Family Attorney | May 08
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"As a family law practitioner with almost 20 years of experience I have met all kinds of lawyers, and wish there were more like Maria Testa. I completely endorse this attorney's work. She is knowledgeable, hardworking and dedicated to her clients. She is always prepared and truly an asset to the legal community. You should know that Maria goes the extra mile for her clients. Thorough and very bright, you could not go wrong using her as your attorney!"
Family Attorney | Apr 25
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"I endorse this lawyer."
Divorce and separation
Divorce and separation
Philadelphia Family Lawyer Maria Testa
Maria Testa
Family Attorney
Philadelphia, PA
Licensed for 14 years
Free Consultation
Virtual consultation available