Status Conference Volunteers Needed

Calling all Family Law Attorneys:

Department 15 urgently needs status conference volunteers.

Volunteering at the Status Conferences is a great way to give back and learn or refresh your skills.

This is a great opportunity to feel a real sense of accomplishment as you help pro per litigants with their disclosures, answer their family law questions, help them resolve disputes and reach settlement, and assist them with their judgment packages.  If this is your first time volunteering, Judge Franchi or other volunteers will be there to assist you.

Also, if you are planning on being at Court for a Status Conference in another Department, they will try to get you in towards the beginning of their calendars if you inform their Clerks that you are scheduled to volunteer in Department 15.

Snacks will be provided.

Please click on this link to sign-up.

Do’s and Don’ts of FCS Mediation – July 10th

Friday, July 10, 2020
Via Zoom
12:00 pm – 1:30 pm

Please join the Family Law Section on Friday, July 10, 2020, for a presentation by Tanya Both and Lisa Bergman, LMFT, on tips and tricks for Family Court Services (FCS) mediation.

This is a unique opportunity for the Members of the Family Law Section to engage with the professionals intimately in charge of custody mediation services for the Court.  Our presenters will cover the following topics:

  1. FCS basics (common mistakes);
  2. Statutory bases for mediation services;
  3. Tips for preparing clients for FCS mediation; and
  4. COVID-19 related updates for FCS mediation.

Lisa Bergman is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist with a Master’s Degree in psychology.  She began working for FCS in 1988 for the Superior Court of California, Riverside County.  In addition to working for the Court, she has worked in private practice, for non-profit agencies, county mental health, and hospitals, both in-patient and outpatient services, providing family, marriage and individual therapy for adults, teenagers and children.  She has taught psychology for community college as an associate instructor.  In 2011, she graduated from Queen’s University Belfast with a Master’s Degree in Political Psychology.  Upon her return to the United States, she worked as the Director of Family Court Services for the Superior Court of California, Butte County.  In 2015, she began her current position as Supervising Child Custody Recommending Counselor for the Superior Court of California, San Mateo County.

Tanya Both worked as a family law and medical-legal partnership attorney before joining the Family Law Facilitator’s office in 2012.  In 2019, she joined the Superior Court of California, San Mateo County as Managing Attorney for FCS, the Family Law Facilitator’s office, Alternate Dispute Resolution (ADR), and the Probate Court Investigators.

One hour of MCLE Credit will be provided for attendance.

Due to continued Shelter-in-Place restrictions, this event will be hosted via Zoom.  Consistent with our prior virtual presentations that have qualified for MCLE credit, all attendees must register online prior to the event.

To further verify attendance, please listen for three “keywords” to be announced at the beginning, middle, and end of the presentation.  A Survey Monkey survey will be circulated by the SMCBA, which will request confirmation of those three keywords.  You will be given MCLE credit upon successful completion of the survey and will be able to access your MCLE certificate on the SMCBA website thereafter.

Cost: $30 for Family Law Section members and $40 for non-members.

Registration: Please log-in on the SMCBA website to register for this event. The Zoom invite and materials for the webinar will be emailed to attendees 1 day before the event.

If you wish to pay by check, please send your check payable to SMCBA, to: 333 Bradford St., Ste. 200, Redwood City, CA 94063. Attn: Events. *Please note what event you are paying for and the name of the attendee.

Cancellations must be received at least 48 hours prior to the event for a full refund of the registration fee. If you do not cancel within 48 hours or do not show up to the event, you will be charged the full amount.

Family Law Practice in the Covid Era – April 23rd

Please join the Family Law Section on Thursday, April 23, 2020, for a live webinar with the hearing officers of the San Mateo County Superior Court’s Family Law Division about family law practice in the COVID-19 era.

This is a unique opportunity for the Members of the Family Law Section to engage with their very own San Mateo County Family Law Judges and Commissioners about court operations and procedures during this COVID-19 crisis.

Members are encouraged to submit questions on any topic of general interest to the Family Law Section. In past years, questions have ranged from Bench Officer preferences for courtroom practice and procedure, to understanding and application of recent changes in family law. No case-specific hypotheticals please. Please submit questions to Robert Cashen at rcashen@mtsalawgroup.com with copy to co-chair, Rachel Leff-Kich, at rachel.leffkich@gmail.com no later than Monday, April 20, 2020. This will allow the Judges and Commissioners sufficient time to adequately consider the Members’ questions or concerns.

Date: Thursday, April 23, 2020

Time: 12:00PM- 1:00PM

Location: Live Webinar – Zoom Meeting information and instructions will provided 1 day prior to the webinar.

Cost: This event is FREE!

Registration: Please log-in on the SMCBA website to register for this event.

Annual Panel Discussion with the Family Law Bench Officers – CANCELLED

Crowne Plaza Hotel
1221 Chess Dr.
Foster City, CA 94404

Please join the Family Law Section on Friday, March 13, 2020 at noon, for their annual panel discussion with the hearing officers of the San Mateo County Superior Court’s Family Law Division.

This is a unique opportunity for the Members of the Family Law Section to engage with their very own San Mateo County Family Law Judges and Commissioners on a more informal basis and to ask some of the burning questions that generally cannot be answered from the Bench.

Members are encouraged to submit questions on any topic of general interest to the Family Law Section. In past years, questions have ranged from Bench Officer preferences for courtroom practice and procedure, to understanding and application of recent changes in family law. No case-specific hypotheticals please. Please submit questions to be addressed at the panel discussion by no later than Monday, March 2, 2020. This will allow the Judges and Commissioners sufficient time to adequately consider the Members’ questions or concerns. Questions should be submitted to apham@mtsalawgroup.com.

Cost: $45 for Family Law Section members and $55 for non-section members.

Registration: Please log-in on the SMCBA website to register for this event. If you wish to pay by check, please send your check payable to SMCBA, to: 333 Bradford St., Ste. 200, Redwood City, CA 94063. Attn: Events.

If you are sending a check, make sure to note what event you are paying for and the name of the attendee.

No refunds for cancellations less than 24 hours prior to event time.

How to E-File in San Mateo County – Feb 19th

San Mateo County Bar Association
333 Bradford St.
Board Room
Redwood City, CA 94063

The Barristers Section invites you to a “Brown Bag” E-Filing workshop on Wednesday, February 19, 2020 from 12:00pm to 1:00pm. The workshop will have an emphasis on Family Law as E-Filing became mandatory on January 21, 2020. During this workshop, speaker Joanna Wald and Crystal Long will give E-Filing demonstrations, tips and tricks on how to prevent rejections, and provide updates on local E-Filing rules and procedures.

1 hour of MCLE credit will be provided.

Cost: Free!

Registration: Please log-in on the SMCBA website to register for this event.

Defining and Achieving Realistic Financial Goals in Divorce – Feb 14th

Crowne Plaza Hotel – Foster City
1221 Chess Dr.
Foster City, CA 94404
12:00PM – 1:30PM

Please join the Family Law Section on Friday, February 14, 2020, for a presentation on Defining and Achieving Realist Financial Goals in Divorce by Clari Nolet CFP®, CDFA®

As a senior wealth advisor at Team Hewins, Clari works collaboratively with other advisors to provide comprehensive financial planning and investment advice to women in transition, individuals and families. In addition, Clari has published a number of articles, and has been quoted as an industry expert in the media. Clari will provide practical tools to help identify and improve clients interaction with money and financial planning through the use of effective financial habit formation.   Clari will also demonstrate the value of visualization in financial planning to understand the short- and long-term outcomes of the tough decisions necessitated by the divorce process. Understanding the interaction of the many variables that impact a clients specific financial situation is complex.   Visualization can be an effective tool to assist clients in making informed realistic decisions during divorce financial planning, often reducing immobilization and fear.   This course will cover specific examples of visualization, including, but not limited to; comparing 4 options for the family home, a lump sum settlement versus support over time and the significant impact of spending in the financial planning process.

Clari Nolet, is a Certified Financial Planner and a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst with Team Hewins in Redwood City.  She holds a B.S. in Chemistry from Saint Lawrence University and an M.B.A. in Finance from Suffolk University’s Sawyer School of Management.  Clari has focused her practice on assisting women in transition organize and build their financial lives by setting and supporting their goals as they reinvent themselves.  Clari routinely assists parties and counsel in family law cases develop realistic financial goals and a plan for attaining those goals.  She has worked with family law counsel both as a consulting and testifying expert.  Prior to joining Team Hewins, Clari worked with Wealth Architects in Mountain View and Opes Advisors in Palo Alto.

Cost: $45 for Family Law Section members and $55 for non-section members.

Registration: Please log-in on the SMCBA website to register for this event. If you wish to pay by check, please send your check payable to SMCBA, to: 333 Bradford St., Ste. 200, Redwood City, CA 94063. Attn: Events.

If you are sending a check, make sure to note what event you are paying for and the name of the attendee.

No refunds for cancellations less than 24 hours prior to event time.

A Beginner’s Guide to Death and Divorce – Jan 9th

San Mateo County Superior Court
400 County Center
Judge Miram’s Courtroom – Dept 28
Redwood City, CA 94063
12:00pm – 1:15pm

Join speaker Sarah A. Brooks for a presentation on “A Beginner’s Guide to Death and Divorce” on Thursday, January 9, 2020 at noon. Ms. Brooks will provide an overview of the nuances of both death and divorce and how the probate code and the family law code intersect when an individual dies during a family law dispute.

The discussion will cover a basic understanding of the proper characterization of community and separate property assets and how they will ultimately be distributed to the spouse/former spouse, beneficiaries, or heirs as well as other issues to consider when administering a decedent’s trust or estate.

Sarah A. Brooks is a shareholder of Aaron, Riechert, Carpol & Riffle, APC and a Certified Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust, and Probate Law. Sarah focuses her practice on litigation arising from trust, estate, and conservatorship matters, including elder abuse litigation. A fierce advocate, she has successfully represented professional fiduciaries, beneficiaries, and others in all stages of litigation.

Cost: FREE but must RSVP.

Log-in on the SMCBA website to RSVP by Tuesday, January 7, 2020 or contact Sabrina M. Johnson. Please sign up as early as possible, and please let us know if your plans change.

Lunch will be provided by the SMCBA Estate Planning and Probate Section.

1 hour of MCLE Credit will be provided.

Top Family Law Cases of 2019 – Jan 3rd

Crowne Plaza Hotel – Foster City
1221 Chess Dr.
Foster City, CA 94404
12:00PM – 1:30PM

Please join the Family Law Section on Friday, January 3, 2020, for a presentation by the peerless Garrett Dailey on some of the most compelling appellate cases of 2019. Garrett Dailey’s expertise on this topic is unparalleled, and we are most fortunate that he so generously gives us his time to review the top cases of the prior year.

Mr. Dailey is a Certified Family Law Specialist focusing on appellate issues.  He is a Fellow in the American and International Academies of Matrimonial Lawyers.  He is the publisher and author of ATTORNEY’ S BRIEFCASE®LEGAL RESEARCH SOFTWARE and the author of SupportTax® and Lawgic®.  The many awards he has received include a Lifetime Achievement Award by the State Bar of California Family Law Section; the 30th Anniversary Outstanding Service Award from Association of Certified Family Law Specialists as well as the 1995 Hall of Fame Award; and the 2005 Outstanding Conference Speaker Award from the Cal. CPA Education Foundation.  Some of his more recent appellate cases include Marriage of Valli; Elkins v. Superior Court; Marriage of La Musga; Marriage of Macilwaine, Marriage of Facter; Marriage of Hibbard; Marriage of Hill & Dittmer; Marriage of Cadwell-Faso; Marriage of Sorge; and Marriage of Alter.  Mr. Dailey will present a more in-depth summary of updates in California Family Law at his 2019 Year in Review, which will be held in Oakland on January 10, 2020, and in San Jose on February 1, 2020.

Cost: $45 for Family Law Section members and $55 for non-section members.

Registration: Please log-in on the SMCBA website to register for this event. If you wish to pay by check, please send your check payable to SMCBA, to: 333 Bradford St., Ste. 200, Redwood City, CA 94063. Attn: Events.

If you are sending a check, make sure to note what event you are paying for and the name of the attendee.

No refunds for cancellations less than 24 hours prior to event time.

FLS – 2019 Annual Holiday Luncheon – Dec 18th

The Family Law Section cordially invites you to attend the 2019 Annual Holiday Luncheon, honoring the Family Law Bench and Staff, Family Court Services, Facilitator’s Office, Alternative Dispute Resolution Program, and Family Law Clerks.  Join us on Wednesday, December 18, 2019 from 11:30am to 1:30pm to celebrate the holiday season, enjoy each other’s company, and show our appreciation for the hard work and dedication of the family law judicial officers and the Court staff who serve the family law litigants of San Mateo County.

Doors Open at 11:30am. Lunch will be served at 12:15pm. Valet Parking is Mandatory. No Host Bar.

Location: The Peninsula Golf & Country Club
701 Madera Drive
San Mateo, CA 94403

Cost: $80 per person.

Registration: Please log-in on the SMCBA website or RSVP by Monday December 02, 2019 to Jeffrey Ward by sending your RSVP form to Jeffrey Ward, Berra Stross Wallacker & Mass, 411 Borel Ave., Ste 550, San Mateo, CA 94402.

Sponsorship: If you would like to sponsor this event, please select from one of the following sponsorship opportunities:

  • $750 or more (Platinum)
  • $600 – $749 (Gold)
  • $450 – $599 (Silver)
  • $300 – $449 (Bronze)

The generosity of your sponsorship serves as a gift of thanks to our judicial officers and to the Court staff by ensuring that they may attend this holiday festivity free of charge. Please send your selected sponsorship level and check made payable to SMCBA along with with your sponsorship form to Jeffrey Ward, Berra Stross Wallacker & Mass, 411 Borel Ave., Ste 550, San Mateo, CA 94402.

Please note that sponsorship of SMCBA events is not deductible as a charitable contribution. It may be deductible under other sections of the Internal Revenue Code.

FLS – Addiction In Family Law – Aug 9th

Crowne Plaza Hotel
1221 Chess Drive
Foster City, CA 94404

Please join the Family Law Section on Friday, August 9, 2019, for a presentation by David Kan, M.D. regarding addiction issues in family law.

Tools for identifying substance abuse in attorneys will be discussed. The current state of alcohol and drug testing in family law will be reviewed. Guidelines around testing frequency and format will be discussed. The audience will have the opportunity to pose case-based questions to an evaluator in these issues.

Dr. Kan graduated from Northwestern University Medical School. He finished his General Psychiatry Residency and Forensic Psychiatry Fellowship at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). He is Board-certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology in General and Forensic Psychiatry and he is Board-Certified by the American Board of Addiction Medicine in Addiction Medicine. He is a member of the faculty at the UCSF Department of Psychiatry.

Dr. Kan is an active member of the California Society of Addiction Medicine (CSAM). CSAM is a physician organization dedicated to improving the treatment of substance use disorders. Dr. Kan has planned conferences and spoken to many physician and non-physician groups. Dr. Kan is the current President of CSAM. Dr. Kan is a Distinguished Fellow of the American Society of Addiction Medicine (D.F.A.S.A.M.)

Dr. Kan offers forensic consulting services to courts and attorneys in civil, criminal, and administrative matters. He has testified in multiple states, counties and federal court as an expert witness. He is a member of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law.  Dr. Kan has also testified numerous times before the California Assembly and Senate on addiction treatment. Dr. Kan has testified before Congress advocating for expanding access to addiction treatment.

One hour of Competence Issues CLE credit will be provided for attendance.

Time: 12:00pm – 1:30pm

Cost: $45 for Family Law Section members and $55 for non-section members.

Registration: Please log-in on the SMCBA website to register for this event. If you wish to pay by check, please send your check payable to SMCBA, to: 333 Bradford St., Ste. 200, Redwood City, CA 94063. Attn: Events.

If you are sending a check, make sure to note what event you are paying for and the name of the attendee. No refunds for cancellations less than 24 hours prior to event time.

*Please note: Registration closes on Tuesday, August 06, 2019.