Family Law Services

Oakland Prenuptial AgreementMy family law practice provides mediation, consultations, limited scope representation and litigation services in the following areas:

  • Divorce (Dissolution of Marriage)
  • Legal Separation
  • Paternity Suits
  • Domestic violence and Restraining Orders
  • Pre-marital agreements
  • Post-marital agreements
  • Child Custody and Visitation
  • Child and Spousal Support
  • Valuation and division of community property assets and debts, including real estate, business interests, professional practices, personal property, retirement benefits and other investments
  • Post-divorce Modifications/Enforcement

Mediation Services

Mediation is a process wherein the parties elect to meet with a mutually selected impartial and neutral professional who can assist them in negotiating a family law resolution. Mediation leaves the decision-making power to the parties, rather than to attorneys, experts and judges. The mediator does not decide any of the issues for the parties or determine what terms are “just.” The mediator’s role is to assist the parties in arriving at a solution that reasonably meets the party’s respective goals and needs regardless of what the law may provide or how a judge may rule.

I offer mediation services to those clients who want to take an active role in structuring their own divorce settlement. Individuals who choose mediation share with their spouses a commitment to working together in a cooperative, non-adversarial way to achieve a fair division of their property and to resolve such issues as spousal support, child support, child custody, and visitation. When engaged in mediation services, I regularly consult with clients who participate in the mediation process.

Consultation Services

Consultation services generally fall into three categories:

  1. ADVICE: Persons seeking legal advice about various family law issues may meet privately with me to discuss their questions in confidence to gain a better understanding of how the law may impact their situation.
  2. SINGLE CONSULT: Parties choosing to represent themselves in their family law litigation may retain my services to consult with on an as-needed basis.
  3. ON-GOING CONSULT: Parties proceeding through family law mediation may retain my office to serve as his/her independent consulting attorney to provide legal advice and guidance during the mediation process and to review proposed agreements.

When I am retained to provide consultation services, the consultation is confidential, but I am not retained as the representing attorney in the matter, I do not become the attorney of record, and I do not handle or direct the litigation. Instead, the party decides how often to contact me and on what issues he/she wishes to consult.

Limited Scope Representation

Limited scope representation allows clients the opportunity to use an attorney for a particular part of their case, thereby reducing the fees associated with full representation. It also provides individuals with the ability to follow proper court procedures and present important information to the courts during the more complicated parts of their cases.

I offer limited scope representation in the following areas:

  • Document review and advice
  • Document preparation (response to pleadings, drafting motions or other court documents)
  • Court appearance (hearing)
  • Child Custody Mediation preparation and coaching
  • Court preparation and coaching

Litigation Services

Litigation refers to the process by which a matter is brought into a formal court setting where the outcome is often determined by a judicial officer, such as a judge or commissioner, after reviewing legal briefs and pleadings and after hearing oral argument at a court proceeding. In the traditional family law litigation model, each party is represented by an attorney and most issues are brought before the court through motions and court trials. Even in litigation, the parties strive to resolve issues in settlement both outside of court and within the court system.

Some cases cannot be resolved without going to court. I have extensive trial experience and will guide you through that process. Should your case be one that cannot be settled, I will vigorously represent you in the litigation process, while doing my best to make the process humane and tolerable for you and to keep costs under control. I will make sure that I understand your concerns and goals and will answer questions about the substantive issues, the process, the possible outcomes and the consequences so that you can make informed decisions.

Costs & Fees

Because family law matters, by their very nature, have a way of becoming more complex and more time consuming than originally anticipated, I cannot give you an estimate of what your total fees and costs will be. The emotional dynamics of the parties, the cooperation of the parties, and their willingness to settle have a great bearing on the amount of time required and, therefore, the fees and costs. Often the total is higher than anticipated. However, my fees are among the most affordable, you will receive superior legal representation and you will only be charged for actual time and costs, whatever they prove to be.

If you have an issue that deals with divorce, legal separation, paternity suits, pre-marital agreements, post-nuptial agreements, the disposition of a family’s net worth, business valuation, child custody, child support, and/or spousal support please do not hesitate to contact me directly to schedule a one-on-one meeting. I offer a $300 private and confidential 60 minute initial meeting where I provide you with the knowledge, empathy and legal insight needed to handle life’s challenges, hardships and unexpected twists.