We are excited to announce that attorney, Erin F. Duncan, has now joined our firm to expand our practice to include family law legal services. Erin has been practicing family law for many years and was a family law paralegal before attending law school. In law school, Erin participated on the FAMU School of Law Trial Team, where Todd was her coach and saw first hand Erin’s potential talent as a trial lawyer. Erin has developed that talent and applied her vast experience in family law and in business to develop her own unique approach to practicing family law. She shares her thoughts and experiences in the open letter below.
I have had the opportunity to work with the best family law attorneys and supporting professionals in the Central Florida area, either as employers, counsel for other family member(s) in a case, or as part of a professional team. I have represented clients by advocating men’s rights (equality in custody for both parents), encouraging the cooperative and collaborative processes (keeping personal business private and entirely within the family’s control), and litigating (ensuring equal access to the court system and applying facts to the law in justiciable disputes). It is an absolute certainty that no two cases are the same. There is no place for cookie-cutter case planning in family law because just as no two people are alike, the resolutions to their parenting differences or financial disagreements are not alike.
Clients are entitled to competent advice so that they can make informed choices. Where clients are unwilling or unable to contribute to their case, it is my duty to make sure that their rights are protected and that their obligations to their families is clearly understood.
It is my pleasure to have the opportunity to establish the family law division of C. Todd Smith, P.A. and to be able to bring together the host of professionals that it takes to effectively guide a family through the process of change. Whether a couple is divorcing, adopting, planning for future financial events, or deciding the best way to raise children without entering into marriage, working with an established family law attorney is essential. So is the understanding that an attorney cannot work alone. The mental, emotional, physical and spiritual health of all of the participants in a family law case is compromised at different times and in different ways through the process. Parents may find themselves in situations where they are taking on new roles and responsibilities in their changing family unit and need help or education. Couples may suddenly be dividing assets that they once believed would secure their respective retirements. Change is difficult. Navigating the process with experienced professionals makes the process manageable. My approach to the practice of family law is to work with clients on a case-by-case basis to determine the best way to achieve their goals, preserve their resources, and maximize the opportunity for growth through change. Some cases require additional professional input, some need community services, and some can be done on a simple flat-fee basis by me alone. I bring together whatever professionals and resources are needed to effectively problem-solve each client’s needs.
My legal experience includes everything from helping pro se clients to prepare their own cases, to mediating family cases for my colleagues, to teaching paralegal students in college, to litigating complex family issues in court. Please contact me at any time to discuss professional team-building, client needs in your business, or to obtain a consultation on a family law matter.