Although it is not as commonplace as in other professions, attorneys can and do specialize in particular areas of the law. These specializations can be somewhat unofficial. For instance, a lawyer who does a lot of personal injury work could tout her years of experience representing clients and also point to her general knowledge and other credentials.
However, to call oneself a Certified Family Law Specialist in California, one has to go through a formal examination of their knowledge and must also pass other specific requirements set forth by the California bar.
The first step is for an attorney interested in specialization to demonstrate that they have detailed knowledge of family law matters by taking a comprehensive test that will require a deeper dive in to family law than would, say, the bar examination licensed attorneys in this state would take.
After a lawyer successfully passes the exam, it must then be demonstrated that they have the requisite experience and additional continuing education in the area of family law. Additionally, they must submit the names of colleagues who can attest to both knowledge and skill, as well as overall professionalism and good character.
The point behind this formal specialization is to be able to identify family law attorneys who have shown both the skill and professionalism to handle all sorts of family law cases, including cases involving high income, lots of assets or particularly complicated and contentious child support and custody issues.
The attorney at our law office is a Certified Family Law Specialist. As such, clients who feel that their case is difficult or complicated have entrusted their most sensitive family law matters to him.