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Paula J. Goforth

Family Attorney at Carlsbad, CA

4.8   11 reviews
  • Licensed for 21 years
    State CA
    Acquired 2002
    Active No misconduct found

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

About Paula

Learn Paula’s areas of practice.

Practice areas
  1. Divorce and separation
    I am an attorney who specializes in complex family law issues which include divorce and separation. I am also certified by the California Board of Legal Specialists as a Specialist in Family Law.

  2. Family
    I am certified by the California Board of Legal Specialists as a Specialist in Family Law. I am highly experienced with complex family law issues. I find unique solutions to unique cases.

  3. Marriage and prenuptials
    I am a Family Law Specialist and also one of few San Diego Attorneys with experience in drafting and advising client's regarding Prenuptial and Post Marital Agreements in San Diego County.

  4. Mediation
    Mediation is a far more effective method for couples to part ways. Working as a family law mediator, I facilitate both parties to keep control over the essential decisions impacting their lives, and the lives of their children without going court.


It was my divorce and my need to support my two children that led me to a job in a family law office.  After working as a legal secretary and a paralegal for a number of years I decided to become a family law attorney.  I put myself through lawschool working as a legal secretary while raising my then teenagers.  I understand family law from both a personal and professional perspective.   I understand the emmotional difficulty the decision to leave your marriage brings and its effect on you and your children.  My client's tell me that I bring a compassionate personal component to my practice that helps them to get through a difficult part of their lives and to more easily move on to a better life.  I will work hard to get your case settled in the most amicable way possible, but will not shy away from litigation if it becomes necessary. Call for a consultation.


Top Contributor 2020,2019,2017,2016
Top Contributor
2020 2019 2017 + 1 ...
Client's Choice 2016
Client's Choice

Photos and videos


Family Law and Mediation Offices of Paula J. Goforth
2131 Palomar Airport Road, Suite 200/215
Carlsbad, CA, 92011


4.8 / 5.0
  11 customer reviews
5 Star
4 Star
3 Star
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1 Star
Client's Choice 2016
Client's Choice
Client's Choice is an Avvo award granted to attorneys with a significant number of client reviews over 4 stars in a given year.
Posted by anonymous | April 23, 2016
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Trustworthy, honest, and extremely skilled
Paula helped me through a very difficult, high conflict divorce, and an equally difficult and high-conflict custody situation. With her help I was able to avoid court litigation over divorce issues. While she did need to help me through court hearings on the custody issues, she was thorough, compassionate, and tenacious. She recommended reputable experts who gave us great advice and as a team enabled us to create a plan that would be healthy, safe, and provide adequate protection to my child. She was honest about what was and wasn't reasonable and feasible, and always kept the very best interest of my child as her highest objective.
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Posted by Stacy | May 5, 2016
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Professional and Knowledgable
Paula listened to me from the get go and let me know what my options were. She was extremely thorough and always kept in contact with me during the process whether by email or phone. She is compassionate and very knowledgeable. I highly recommend her.
Posted by Steve T. | December 16, 2020
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Great Attorney
I hired Paula through the advise of a family member. Let me just say this, if you are looking for the right person to handle your divorce, custody, and support issues effectively. Look no further, Paula and her team ( Matt ) will get the job done right for you with experience, knowledge, compassion, and trust. My now ex wife was so problematic and full of unnecessary bullying and threating tactics of litigation over a pin drop. I was emotionally exhausted and unsure of the unsettled waters that were on the horizon for me. I handed the reigns over to Paula and she delivered not only in silencing my ex wife, and negotiations with opposing council, but in the court room as well. She will fight for you're rights as an individual as well as what best for your children. Paula is the right Attorney to have in your corner.
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Posted by Monique | October 20, 2017
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Awesome attorney
Paula is very good at what she does. She’s all about her client. She will do her best to get you the best. I highly recommend her services.
Posted by anonymous | October 10, 2017
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Very helpful!
I asked a general question regarding a complex question that my lawyer is unable to assist me with. Paula provided the answer that made the most sense. I followed up with her to get additional information. She emailed me back promptly with the information about the form I requested and suggested that I consider hiring a service to complete the necessary paperwork for the order. She was honest and told me she was unable to recommend a specific service because AVVO is a referral service. I appreciated her providing me with a direction for completion of this order without having to hire an additional attorney to help me. Thank you Paula for being so helpful!
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Posted by Zahi | May 11, 2017
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Good Job Paula Goforth
Paula J. Goforth did a very professional job on my behalf and got the other party to acknowledge facts with documentation and finally come to settlement which was achieved successfully.
Posted by anonymous | January 18, 2017
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Excellent Advice
Paula was extremely professional and honest. She was quick to respond to emails and I felt comfortable talking with her over the phone. I received expert advice concerning my relationship and felt that her feedback was fantastic. I absolutely would recommend her!
Posted by anonymous | December 20, 2016
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Excellent and Thorough.
Paula helped me in the past and did a wonderful job. When, unfortunately , I needed an attorney again I didn't hesitate to call Paula. She took me through the process with a clear goal. The whole process was handled quickly and with care. I think both my ex-wife and I were as happy with the outcome as we could be under the circumstances. Divorce, no matter what is extremely difficult and painful. Paula does a great job keeping it as civil as possible. But will do what it takes to finish the process. I highly recommend.
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Posted by Heather | December 20, 2016
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Paula Goforth best divorce lawyer around
I would like to recommend Paula to anyone that needs a great divorce attorney. She makes sure you understand the whole process and is amazing at getting everything done and filed thoroughly and in a great timely manner. I was referred to her by a friend and she was exactly what I heard she would be. Please have a consultation with her and you will instantly know how great she is.
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Posted by anonymous | June 30, 2016
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Dedicated and grateful
Paula has been with me since my difficult divorce in 2006. Not realizing at the time, the saga would continue. Having been served with papers to appear in court 3 more times to battle out financial support, Paula was there having the background and history to guide me through. I couldn't do it alone. Her knowledge and continuity of my cases helped. I didn't have to recreate the wheel. She had a clear understanding of my goals and what needed to be done. Thank you Paula. I'm forever grateful.
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Posted by Arnaud | February 1, 2019
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Did not work out
I hired Paula at the beginning of my divorce and then found another attorney. I was not happy with her turn around time / ability to multi-task. She would tell me she needs a week to get back because she is busy with one case. Also I believe I could have avoided a Sapeena if she had submitted my pay stubs to OPC earlier. The other aspect that did not work out for me is accuracy in communication, granted I am a bit of a detail-oriented control freak. I had provided specific text to change and she did not merge it, more than once. At the time she worked for me (2017) her rates were the cheapest I had seen. The best part being the minimum billable is 1/10 of hour, not 2/10. I have no doubt others may be satisfied with her services.
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  • Retainer Always
Payment methods
Cash, Check, Credit Card


AVVO RATING 10.0 (Superb)

Work Experience

  • Associate Attorney
  • Law Offices of Richard V. Hyatt
  • 2003 - 2014
  • Associate Attorney
  • Law Offiices of Mele & Ros
  • 2002 - 2003


  • Western Sierra School of Law
  • JD - Juris Doctor
  • 2000


  • North County Bar Association
  • Board Member
  • 2019 - Present
  • Carlsbad Chamber of Commerce
  • Member
  • 2018 - Present
  • North County Certified Family Law Specialists
  • Secretary
  • 2014 - Present
  • North County Certified Family Law Specialsts
  • Member
  • 2012 - Present
  • North County Bar Association
  • Member
  • 2003 - Present
  • San Diego Family Law Bar Association
  • Member
  • 2002 - Present
  • San Diego County Bar Association
  • Member
  • 2002 - Present
  • San Diego Chamber of Commerce
  • Member
  • 2016 - 2017
View all associations

Languages Spoken

  • English

Honors and Awards

  • Certified Specialist - Family Law
  • State Bar of California
  • 2012


  • Monthly Newsletter
  • Law Offices of Goforth & Nelson Monthly Newsletter
  • 2015

Attorney endorsements

Received (8)
Given (11)
Endorse Paula
Marriage and prenuptials Attorney | Aug 10
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Paula is a very conscientious and experienced lawyer. I would trust her judgment in all circumstances."
Family Attorney | Apr 25
Relationship: Opposing Counsel on matter
"Paula is a very calm, rational, and competent professional. We had a family law case against each other and our two clients were in high conflict with one another. With Paula's help, we were able to reach a full settlement on all issues, saving our client's both time and money. What is perhaps most impressive about Paula is that she is a Certified Specialist in Family Law by the CA State Bar. She definitely knows her stuff! Her knowledge combined with her demeanor, make Paula both a formidable opponent and one who can also readily settle a case. Excellent attorney."
Divorce and separation Attorney | Jul 24
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I just reviewed a superb answer of Ms. Goforth, so good that I referred the Avvo asker to her answer. Accurate, analytic and customized to the needs of the Avvo asker - precisely the qualities that every client would look for when hiring an attorney."
Family Attorney | Jul 03
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer. Paula is a zealous advocate for her clients. I respect her."
Family Attorney | Jun 30
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I have known Paula since she was admitted to the California Bar. She is an attorney that places the client's needs first all the time. She is a brillant family law attorney and I would strongly recommend her to anyone who has a family law matter ranging from simple to complex."
Family Attorney | Jun 29
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Paula is not only very knowledgable but provides clients with practical advice to help them get the best outcome in their family law matter"
Family Attorney | Apr 19
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"Paula Goforth is a highly capable family law attorney. She is very empathetic to her clients' needs, and knows how to get the results her clients deserve. She is a terrific lawyer to have to help get through a very difficult situation. I endorse this lawyer."
Divorce and separation Attorney | Aug 20
Relationship: Opposing Counsel on matter
"Ms Goforth is a very professional and skilled family law attorney. She responds to correspondence and telephone calls promptly and works diligently to resolve issues without high conflict. I highly endorse this attorney."
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