The CFLS Designation Explained

Attorneys who are Certified Family Law Specialists have received distinct designation as experts in their field, according the The State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization. The CFLS founders of Forester Purcell Stowell — Neil M. E. Forester, Matthew K. Purcell and Michelle L. Stowell — have earned this designation through meeting requirements that go far beyond just practicing law. They have:

  • Passed the Family Law Specialist Bar Exam
  • Been recommended by judges and other attorneys
  • Obtained experience and rigorous training in all areas of family law
  • Participated as lead counsel in all facets of family law trials
  • Committed to ongoing education and recertification

Only a small percentage of California lawyers are certified specialists in their area of practice.

This high level of public commitment to excellence in the practice of family law extends beyond their clients. Neil, Matt and Michelle have devoted time to pro bono representation and to serving on Boards of Directors for organizations dedicated to family and children’s well-being.

Family law is a highly technical field. Make no mistake, retaining a Certified Family Law Specialist is money well-spent, and will save you trouble, time and expense over the long run.

Forester Purcell Stowell attorneys practice EXCLUSIVELY in family law, handling cases involving:

  • Divorce / Dissolution of marriage
  • Spousal and child support
  • Child custody and visitation
  • Children with special needs
  • Domestic violence, DVROs
  • Complex property division
  • Business valuation issues
  • Prenuptial and postnuptial agreements
  • Guardianships
  • Juvenile dependency
  • International child custody
  • Domestic partnerships and dissolutions
  • Trials, litigation and appeals

This information is general in nature and should not be construed as legal advice. Contact the firm at 916-293-4000 or

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