Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19115
Profession(s)Lawyer, Civil Practitioner, Mediator
One of those lucky people who truly loves what she does, Ellen’s enthusiasm and expertise continue to be evident more than 25 years after beginning her work in family law. Through personal care and attention to every case, she is a true advocate for her clients—a strong, well-respected figure in the courtroom, known for aggressively pursuing her clients’ legal rights, as well as a powerful champion of no-court alternatives.
Over the years, Ellen has witnessed firsthand the trauma and emotional turmoil that family litigation causes, especially to children caught in the middle, as well as the tremendous financial costs. Families are almost always left fractured, and the negative effects on children are well documented. This drove her desire to find a better approach and co-found the Center for Peaceful Resolution. After all, no family wants a long, expensive fight in court, but many still find themselves in that position, believing there is no other way.
Whenever possible, Ellen’s goal is to guide families through a healthy divorce. A certified collaborative divorce attorney and an experienced mediator, Ellen is proud of her success with no-court alternatives. For families who want to work with lawyers, a collaborative divorce can be achieved by having two collaboratively trained lawyers and their clients agree to figure things out at a table, without proceeding to court. In family law mediation, the parties meet with a trained mediator to reach an agreement. Either of these approaches is likely to result in a more collegial, healthy result for everyone involved. You can find out more about these processes at the Center for Peaceful Resolution website, lawyerswithheart.com.
In addition, Ellen has been an advocate for the LGBTQ+ community, since the start of her career. She handled one of Pennsylvania’s earliest transgender custody cases in 1993, and has remained an active Legal ally ever since. In fact, she is one of only six Pennsylvania lawyers invited to join the LGBT Family Law Institute® of the National LGBT Bar Association, a select group of international attorneys dedicated to pursuing the rights of LGBTQ+ individuals and families.
To fully support her family law clients, Ellen also provides critical wills and estate services. Upon divorcing, clients naturally need to update their wills with new executors, beneficiaries and provisions, as well as agents for powers of attorney and living wills. The firm even retains original documents securely for no additional cost.
Finally, to help people across the state get their lives back on track, Ellen is working with families to have records for underage drinking, minor misdemeanors and even more serious adult convictions sealed under Pennsylvania’s Clean Slate Law, passed in June 2019. If you think you might be eligible, give us a call.
Have a question for Ellen? Schedule a free 15-minute chat to see how she can help. Call 215-639-4070 to set up a time.
Professional ActivitiesI am very involved in many professional organizations including: Pennsylvania Bar Association Montgomery Bar Association Bucks County Bar Association Family Law Institute of the National LGBT Bar Association Philadelphia Volunteers for the Indigent Program - pro bono attorney Montgomery Child Advocacy Program - pro bono attorney ~
Temple University, B.A., Journalism - 1976
Temple University School of Law, J.D. - 1991
CommentsI have been working closely with individuals and families throughout Southeastern Pennsylvania, including Montgomery, Bucks, Chester and Philadelphia counties. I have always counseled clients to remain committed to finding common ground and to working through issues without the need for court intervention. Collaborative law allows parties to feel confident and capable during negotiations, because each person is supported by competent legal counsel. Collaborative practice allows for a holistic approach to the dissolution of a relationship, taking into consideration the needs and goals of all involved, including children and extended families. I have also been an ally for the LGBTQ community for the past 25 years. A few years ago, my experience with and commitment to the LGBTQ community was recognized by having been invited to be a member of the Family Law Institute of the National LGBT Bar Association.