Monday, December 14, 2009

Criminal Law & Family Law

When I decided to become a criminal defense lawyer, I told myself that I would be a criminal law specialist. I wouldn't be a family lawyer or a personal injury lawyer or review contracts, et cetera. I stuck to that premise for a good bit of time, but recently things changed. A friend of mine went out on maternity leave and needed someone she trusted to watch over her files. I'd be doing her a favor and learning a new area of the law in one swoop; it sounded like a good idea so I jumped on it.

I quickly realized the inter-connection between criminal law and family law. These days family law is inter-connected to all areas of the law for one simple reason: all clients, be they accused of crimes or be they corporate big-wigs, have family legal issues. Divorce, child custody/visitation, child support, adoption... everyone either experiences or knows someone who experiences at least one of these issues at some point in their life.

I pride myself in helping my clients - not just representing them on a case, but listening to them, really hearing them out, and then helping them through whatever it is that's troubling them. During the last 5 years that's almost exclusively been criminal-related problems. But more and more those problems involved a violence spouse they needed to get away from, a fresh start needed after a marriage soured over the years, a grandchild they needed to provide for...

So I'm still not going to be a personal injury lawyer or a contract review lawyer - but I will split my practice between criminal AND family law. Both can be trying but let's face it: they can both also be very, very rewarding.

7 comments:

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