Lessons learned and shared about family law and about being a family lawyer

In November, I was honoured to be invited to speak at a number of events.

In one, I had the pleasure of being a guest lecturer in the Family Law Course at Allard Hall, UBC’s law school.  On ZOOM, my collaborative colleague, Jon Lazar, and I taught the students about non-traditional options, or alternative dispute resolution processes, such as mediation, collaborative divorce and arbitration  for resolving family law disputes.  The students had fantastic questions about how to help clients get beyond the old “win-lose” mentality, how to make the collaborative option more known to the public and how couples with family violence concerns can be safely managed and assisted in these processes.  It is always a joy to share with energetic, creative-thinking soon-to-be lawyers.  The next generation of lawyers innately understand the benefit of reducing harm to families and addressing concerns holistically.  Some, having come from divorced families themselves, are interested in how to provide children and teenagers a voice in the separation process.  It was exciting to hear from law students passionate about family law or exploring family law, but keen to practise law differently. 

In another event, also at Allard Hall,  I was one of three panelists on a panel on Small and Boutique Law Firms.  I told the law students about my journey from law school to where  I am now  at Connect Family Law.  One of the benefits of working at a small law firm is that I know I am an important member of the team and can influence and help create our firm’s culture.  As a small firm, we can adapt quickly, since there is no large machine or ship to turn, which has been incredibly important during COVID.  I have found that Connect is a place where I have been given the freedom, and even encouraged, to grow my skills and pursue the areas of practice I am passionate about for my clients, such as mediation and collaborative divorce.  Best of all, I really like the people I work with!  I enjoyed being able to share my experience with law students, as well as reflect on how blessed I am to be able to find joy in my work and in my workplace. 

Talking at these events reminded me how much I love what I do, and where my journey has taken me. I love sharing my  knowledge and experience with others. It also introduced me to the lawyers of tomorrow,  a group I know will be great assets to the legal profession. 

If you have questions about family law contact us.

About Rebecca Stanley

Lawyer/Mediator – Fraser Valley/Vancouver

The focus of my practice is to empower people as they navigate the unique stresses (and opportunities) that accompany significant life transitions. My clients have said that my calm, strength and wisdom provide a solid anchor in the sometimes stormy seas of separation and divorce. I feel fortunate to be part of the Connect team, a collective of legal professionals and staff who understand that it is a privilege to support families through times of challenge and transformation.