University of Denver

The Family Law Bar: Stewards of the System, Leaders of Change

Director of Special Projects

In November 2015, the Honoring Families Initiative hosted the Family Bar Summit: Shaping the System for the Families We Serve. The two-day event brought together diverse leaders of the family law bar to identify obstacles to serving children and families in separation and divorce matters, and explore opportunities for meaningful change.

Interactive, engaging conversation highlighted a number of themes and recommendations for reshaping divorce and separation processes to support better outcomes for children and provide greater accessibility, efficiency, and fairness for all parties. Those recommendations are contained in this report, and a toolkit is available online.

The role of the family law attorney is evolving, and if the bar is to effectively respond to the needs of families today and in the future, we must acknowledge these developments. And, as stewards of the family justice system and leaders of change, family law attorneys have an ongoing responsibility to foster continuous system improvement. It is our hope that these two tenets will shape future discussion among and between segments of the family law bar and serve as uniting principles from which all family justice system stakeholders can develop concrete recommendations for systemic improvement.