In addition to offering individualized service designed to meet the intricate and complex needs of all family law matters, Elaine and Thomas possess unique qualifications that allow them to represent their clients with nationally recognized legal expertise.
Currently, there are almost 1,600 AAML Fellows in the United States, including 80 in Florida. This represents just .02% of all family law attorneys in the state, four of whom practice in the Tallahassee area, including both partners at this firm. Fellows are required to be Board Certified Marital and Family Law attorneys and are further distinguished from other family lawyers by having passed rigorous written and oral exams and having undergone peer review by judges and other family lawyers to ensure they have the skills, ethical standards, and substantive knowledge to provide exceptional representation to clients in this complex area of law. AAML Fellows throughout the United States are recognized by judges and attorneys as preeminent family law practitioners with the highest level of knowledge, skill, and integrity.
Board Certification recognizes attorneys’ special knowledge, skills, and proficiency in various areas of law and their professionalism and ethics in practice. Certification is the highest level of evaluation by The Florida Bar concerning the competency and experience of attorneys in the 24 areas of law approved for certification by the Supreme Court of Florida.
Many Florida lawyers handle marital and family law matters at various skill levels, but Board Certified Marital and Family Law attorneys are the only members of The Florida Bar allowed to identify themselves as “Board Certified,” “Specialist,” or “Expert” in Marital and Family Law. Only seven percent (approximately 4,500) of eligible Florida Bar members, including 279 family law attorneys, are Board Certified.
To become Board Certified in Marital and Family Law, attorneys must have a minimum of five years in the practice of law; a satisfactory showing of substantial involvement in the field of Marital and Family Law; a passing grade on the required examination; satisfactory peer review assessment of the attorney’s competence in Marital and Family Law, as well as his or her character, ethics, and professionalism in the practice of law; and satisfaction of specific continuing legal education requirements.
As Chair of the Legislation Committee, Thomas has been extensively involved in changes to the Florida Statutes regarding all types of Family Law matters. He has been instrumental in drafting and revising potential legislation and providing expert testimony to the Florida House of Representatives and Florida Senate concerning Family Law issues. This involvement allows Thomas to be knowledgeable of Family Law legislative changes as they occur and to advise clients accordingly. In addition, Thomas provides legislative updates to other family law attorneys and judges, both locally and statewide, and lectures statewide regarding Family Law legislative matters.