Bay Area Family Law

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Rosen Divorce Attorney Travels to Asia

Lots of people on sabbatical choose to wake up without an alarm clock or take long morning walks, but Lisa M. Angel, one of Rosen Divorce’s leading attorneys, decided to spend her three-month sabbatical traveling around Asia.

Angel said, “I wanted to be away from my comfort zone and challenge myself. Asia in general has always attracted me for some reason. Before I left, I read a lot of Chinese literature; I especially wanted to explore China, an emerging country in the world economic front.”

In 2004, from October to December, Angel moved to Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam, and China. She visited the Great Wall in China, biked through rural Vietnam and Cambodia, and lived in a monastery in Thailand. Angel says, “I’ve been interested in meditation for while and I wanted to see how Buddhism worked in a Buddhist society firsthand,” “I really got a better sense of what it was like; I lived the life of a
Buddhist monk.”

When asked what surprised her on the trip, Angel said, “I never expected to hear Chinese-speaking people in Hong Kong speak English with a British accent or see Tibetan monks sporting hip eyewear and messenger bags with their saffron robes.” She added, “I never imagined Vietnamese women marvel the strength of my legs as they cycled away on a single gear bike loaded with bags of goods too heavy for me to lift.”

From the demolition of the southeastern tsunami, Angel knows a few places she visited on her trip are now washed away. Angel said, “Every time I turn on CNN, I call the Red Cross and make another donation. I have photos of children, I don’t know if they’re even alive,” “When I was staying in Ko-Phi-Phi in Thailand, I remember this young girl who’d swim with me every afternoon. I have her photo; I’m not sure
where she is now.”

Lisa M. Angel is a North Carolina Board Certified Family Law Specialist with Rosen Divorce who has written and spoken extensively on family law issues. Ms. Angel is a recurrent lecturer at continuing legal education programs for attorneys, including as guest lecturer at Duke University School of Law and Campbell Law School. In 2002, Governor Easley appointed Ms. Angel to serve on the Domestic Violence Commission. She also was selected to the Triangle Business Journal's 2002 "40 Under 40" list that recognizes Triangle area leaders. With offices in Raleigh and Charlotte, Rosen Divorce is the largest divorce firm in North Carolina.

Established in 1990, the firm is devoted to providing individual growth and support to couples seeking divorce. Our staff of attorneys, accountants, and specially trained divorce coaches expertly addresses the complex issues of ending a marriage. Our innovative approach acknowledges that divorce is so much more than just a legal matter. Specialties include child custody, alimony, property distribution, separation agreements, and domestic violence relief.

iABUNDANCE! Shines To Authorize Women, With Innovative Self-Help Products

DALLAS-Chris Self and Mary Anne Redmond in 1998 founded Abundance Resource Network, Inc. (dba iAbundance). They began with a vision: the Spirit of Abundance shared globally, empowering women with the nuts and bolts of finances, and life made easy and fun when it comes to money matters.

As unique as the story of these two women being drawn together is, the dynamics behind the assembly of the iAbundance team is equally as impressive. Talented women wanted to be a part of this new company and experience the transformations they knew would occur with iAbundance products. Many wrote checks to support research and development. Women volunteered to join a one-year Advisory Board. Others agreed to participate in a nine-month focus group, requiring homework and dedication.

After five years of research, product development and test marketing, Chris Self and Mary Anne Redmond have introduced their first Spirit of Abundance Kit, available in June, 2003. Uniquely user-friendly, the Kit includes videos/DVDs, audios/CDs, a financial planning handbook, daily reminders of Abundance, and a guidebook.

Suzie Humphreys, a motivational humorist and one of Dallas’ best-loved radio personalities for more than 20 years, is the inspiring and entertaining star of the videos/DVDs, “I Can Do That!” and The Spirit of Abundance. She also hosts the six iAbundance Having It All Together with Abundance and Finances audiotapes/CDs that take listeners on a journey of discovering the basics from specialists in financial planning, insurance, investing, family law, Abundance, and more. The listener hears other women’s real-life stories and how their lives were transformed by the powerful messages on the tapes.

Completing the comprehensive first Kit is a colorful stand-up spiral-bound set of Spirit of Abundance Daily Reminders with 44 ways to enjoy Abundance every day; and the handy reference booklet, Having It All Together with Financial Planning Handbook, filled with practical knowledge and a brief overview of the financial planning process. Color-coded for quick reference, the spiral-bound booklet compresses key information and offers nuggets of wisdom and practical advice on financial matters.

The iAbundance community of empowered women is represented by exclusive jewelry pieces hand-crafted with the free-spirited logo that heralds the joyous message of Abundance. Created in Sterling and 14k Gold or all 14k Gold, the pendant is available at select retail outlets and through the iAbundance website. Initial reviews of the videos and audios have women clamoring for more Spirit of Abundance information and inspiration. Women are eagerly pre-ordering the first Kit for August delivery.

Chris Self and Mary Anne Redmond aren’t stopping with one Kit- more plans are in the works. The Spirit of Abundanceä products will spread to the homes and lives of women and men nationally with an infomercial, a radio show and a fun & inspirational Spirit of Abundance board game.

Chris Self says, “Our vision, our products and our company are all unique. We share a mission to bring women (and men) out of the dark with regard to finances and prosperity and, through iAbundance; we hope to make an enriching difference.”

Mary Anne Redmond adds, “Our core values are FLASH (fun, loving, Abundance, simplicity, and highest quality). We want our company, our products, our clients and our suppliers to all experience flashes of inspiration and the joy of enlightened possibilities when being involved with iAbundance.”

Fathers' Rights Advocate Publishes, A Father’s Guide to Winning Child Custody

Joseph E. Cordell, well-known fathers’ rights advocate on family law issues, has published the second adapted edition of his book Civil War - A Father’s Guide to Winning Child Custody, a hardheaded and practical instruction manual for men seeking to win custody of their children during divorce litigation. The book was released through Publications, gives readers clear, easy-to-understand tips on how to achieve the best results possible. Cordell says, “Winning custody is never a sure thing,” “but having some of the tools which this book provides can certainly give fathers a fighting chance.”

A comprehensive chapter explains every pace of the divorce process, with special attention to the custody battle. Readers will learn the meaning of legal terms, the process of divorce, how courts determine custody, and how to maximize their chances of victory. Civil War: A Father’s Guide to Winning Child Custody is 250 pages long and is available in paperback from and for the price of $24.95. A detailed index is provided to help the readers, rapidly access specific topics.

Joseph E. Cordell is a Principal Partner of Cordell & Cordell, an expanding family law firm with offices in five states, and dedicated specifically to represent men in domestic litigation cases. Cordell is a former host of the popular radio program, Listener’s Legal Line, and a former chairman of the Family Law section of the National Lawyers Association. He is licensed to practice in Missouri and Illinois. He is also the founder of, an online resource for fathers facing divorce and child custody litigation.

Established in 1990, Cordell & Cordell, P.C. has over 20 attorneys practicing completely in the area of domestic litigation. With seven offices located in five states, Cordell & Cordell is one of the largest firms in the United States focusing on the rights of men in family law cases.

Pro-Family Law Center Opposes the Homosexual Political Agenda or the "Gay" Movement

The Sacramento-based Pro-Family Law Center has announced the opening of a litigation office to oppose the homosexual political agenda in California. The office will be headed by Richard Ackerman, formerly of the United States Justice Foundation. The PFLC litigation office will target agencies and organizations which seek to legitimize homosexuality to children or to suppress the freedom of speech of those who disapprove of homosexual conduct or the "gay" movement.

Ackerman said, "The 'gays' pose as a distinguished minority, but their movement is among the most powerful and corrupt political forces in California,” "Under the far-Left Davis administration, homosexual activists are remaking California in their own image and natural families are suffering the consequences. My job is to try to even the playing field and stop the homosexual attack on family values.”

PFLC President Scott Lively said, "The 'gay' agenda has gone too far. Today in California, public school children are being indoctrinated to be pro-'gay,' public monies are being siphoned off to fund 'gay' projects, and average citizens are being punished for speaking out against the 'gay' lifestyle. Our litigation office will challenge the people, policies and practices that put destructive 'gay' interests ahead of the needs of families.”

The Pro-Family Law Center is the nation's former legal organization devoted completely, defending natural families from the homosexual political agenda. Founded in June of 2000 as a division of Abiding Truth Ministries, the PFLC until this date has primarily worked to train parents and others how to efficiently respond to the "gay" agenda in their communities. Resources developed in support of these educational activities, including

Believing that homosexuality and divorce are evenly harmful to family-based society, the PFLC also operates a family mediation service to help strengthen natural families by working to resolve marital and family conflicts outside of court. Heading the mediation service is Dana Cody, a civil rights attorney from Sacramento.

Mental Health Evaluator Decides Child Custody

The current issue of Family Court Review addresses the controversy surrounding the role of the mental health evaluation in child custody cases, led by an article by Timothy Tippins and Jeffrey Wittmann which argues that the child’s best interests are a legal and socio-moral construct, not a psychological one. Tippins and Wittmann write that psychologists have no valid, reliable methods for determining custody plans for children, yet often do. “There is no empirically supportable method or principle by which an evaluator can come to a conclusion with respect to best interests entirely by resorting to the knowledge base of the mental health profession,” the authors assert.

The authors contend that clinicians with adequate forensic training can provide matrimonial and family court judges with useful, allowable information primarily in the first two layers of their model: level I - what the clinician observes, and level II - what s/he concludes about the psychology of a parent, child, or family. At Level III, where the evaluator’s inferences bear more directly on custody-relevant issues, the author advice caution and firm anchoring to premises established as scientifically valid by the empirical research base of the psychology discipline. At Level IV, opinions as to what custody plan eventually serves a given child’s best interest are to be avoided under their model. The authors also offer other recommendations, including that judges prevent expert witnesses from addressing the ultimate custody plan. “The legal system has both the right and duty to exclude opinions that are not supported by good science,” the authors state.

Not everyone agrees with these views, however. All through this issue of Family Court Review experts from varied backgrounds—law professors, mental health experts, researchers, judges, and child custody evaluators in different practice settings and in different countries address the role of the neutral mental health evaluator in child custody disputes in all of its complexity and comment on the Tippins and Wittmann article. The Honorable Arline S. Rotman suggests that they do not go far enough in their call for reform. "Even if we were to adopt all eight of their recommendations, including barring level IV testimony on the ultimate issue, we would still be faced with the problem of custody decision-making based on inadequate and untested evidence," she begins. And Joan B. Kelly and Janet R. Johnston suggest another policy that would reserve forensic custody evaluations for "... serious allegations of child abuse, neglect, and molestation, as well as contested claims of parental psychopathology, substance abuse, or domestic violence, where standards for parental behavior in family court would be more on a par with those in dependency court.”

This special symposium issue of Family Court Review centers on the role of mental health evaluations in the child custody dispute resolution process. For over four decades, Family Court Review has served as an interdisciplinary communication forum for judges, attorneys, mediators, and professionals in mental health and human services who are concerned with the improvement of all aspects of the family court system. It is the journal of the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts.

Attorney Carol A. Soderquist, Nirenstein, Ruotolo & Gonzalez Selected to Participate in NBI’s Elder Law Essentials Seminar

Carol A. Soderquist, family law and mental health and elder law attorney at Nirenstein, Ruotolo & González (NRG), PLC has been selected as one of the speaker's scheduled to participate in the National Business Institute's (NBI) "Elder Law Essentials: From Estate Planning to Estate Recovery" seminar.

The speakers were selected because of their firsthand knowledge and experience with elder law and family law related issues.

The seminar is planned for attorneys, social workers, nursing home administrators, financial planners and others who want to become more expert at helping the elderly plan for the future. NBI is committed to helping with the professional goals of attorneys, accountants and other business professionals and to give the best information through the widest variety of continuing education seminars and reference manuals available today.

Carol A. Soderquist is an attorney at NRG, where she devotes her practice to representing clients in family law matters, with a stress on guardianship/conservator ship related issues, mental health and elder law and adoption. Ms. Soderquist received her B.A. degree from Arizona State University and her J.D. degree from the Arizona State University's College of Law. She was the past chair (2003-2004) of the State Bar of Arizona's Mental Health & Elder law Executive Council and is admitted to practice in the United States District Court of the District of Arizona.

Nirenstein, Ruotolo & González, P.L.C. was established in 2003 by three accomplished family law attorneys, NRG is a boutique family law firm that provides professional representation in Arizona divorce and family law litigation, mediation, appellate review and mental health and elder law services. NRG boasts seven experienced family law attorneys, two litigation analysts, two paralegals, and four support personnel. The firm represents many diverse clients, both in Arizona and nationally, and is the largest law firm in Arizona practicing divorce and family law exclusively.

Hollingsworth Jocham & Zivitz paralegal Susan Heisler wins the Indiana Paralegal Association's award

Susan Heisler, a paralegal with Hollingsworth Jocham & Zivitz, LLC, was awarded the Indiana Paralegal Association’s “New Paralegal of the Year” award for 2006. The award is given to an exceptional member of IPA who has been a member for less than three years and who demonstrates leadership and commitment to the IPA. The member must have exhibited a devotion to the paralegal profession and an interest in furthering the profession by becoming actively involved in association work.

Ms. Susan Heisler has over ten years’ experience working with attorneys dealing in family law and civil litigation. She also dedicated three years to the Marion County Prosecutor’s Office in the Child Support and Domestic Violence Divisions. Ms. Heisler received her Bachelor of Arts Degree in Paralegal Studies from St. Mary-of-the-Woods College.

Ms. Susan Heisler is the Pro Bono Section Chair of the Indiana Paralegal Association; paralegal board member of the Heartland Pro Bono Council; and a member of the Indiana State Bar Association, Paralegal Division.

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