1120 Boston Post Road, Darien, CT 06820 - Tel: 203-202-3100

Just as each family law matter is inherently unique, we also believe that our clients deserve more than a simple and formulaic analysis of their legal rights and responsibilities. As counselors at law, our practice is both client-centered and family-focused. We envision our role as co-managers, working cooperatively to reach a resolution designed to incorporate the myriad of factors that are important to you. It is our duty to provide a well-reasoned perspective and develop a strategic approach on how best to address the issues in contention. However, this cannot be attained without the vital input and personal perspective that you share with us. As we learn about your personal circumstances, we are better equipped and become stronger advocates. As we empower you through consultation, counseling, and education, you become more comfortable, confident and adept at managing your situation and the legal terrain. Through this ongoing and dynamic discourse, we will cooperatively forge a personalized and holistic strategy intended to reach the best resolution - for both you and the family unit overall.

One of the very first, and most important, considerations for all clients is whether the matter will be handled in accordance with the traditional/adversarial model, or if any of the alternative dispute resolution processes would be preferable. While we are skilled in traditional practice and prepared to litigate issues as circumstances may demand, the vast majority of family cases can, and should, be resolved outside of the courtroom. Indeed, we encourage all of our clients to consider whether dispute resolution alternatives would be appropriate for your particular circumstances - whether by engaging in mediation, committing to the collaborative divorce process, or simply seeking consultation for assistance in navigating the legal procedural and requirements. [See Family Law Processes for a better summary of such alternative dispute resolution models].

No matter the role in which we are retained, we work in-tandem from the outset to identify, analyze and prioritize the relevant issues, including the legal, financial and emotional components specific to your situation. All matters are unique, and you have issues that are of personal priority. Such issues may include divergences of opinion regarding parenting, assessment of business interests, allocation of liquid versus non-liquid assets, duration and amount of support (if any), and apportionment of post-educational support.

As all parents will recognize, the ramifications of contested family issues become even more magnified when children are involved. Integral to our "family focused" approach, we continually assess the children’s interests and make efforts to ensure that they are insulated, as much as possible, from the conflict that interrupted the parties’ marriage. It is our aspiration that any settlement is designed to help re-construct the family for the benefit of the children and the parties’ ongoing relationship as co-parents, despite current conflict. While the family dynamic will need to be revised based on the nature of the shifting family structure, the parties should focus on how to minimize the inevitable impact on the children. Such considerations should be addressed in a productive way and might include scheduling of certain parenting time, adaptation of family customs, attention to the children’s routine, and a concerted dedication to the best interests of the children’s ongoing health and well-being.

The CM&M family law practice encompasses, but is not limited to:

Family Law Process – a CM&M Overview

Limited Representation for Family Law Matters

Email Darcy McAlister or call her at 203-202-3121 for more information.