Helping clients through their most sensitive legal issues with integrity, excellence, and compassion for more than 40 years
Joe Condo is a family lawyer, founder of the Condo Law Group, and the latest Principal to join Offit Kurman. For over 40 years, Joe has solidified his reputation as a go-to family law attorney in Virginia. Earlier this month, Joe and his colleagues at the Condo Law Group, Caroline Solano and Elizabeth Szabo, joined Offit Kurman and relocated to the firm’s offices in Tysons Corner. The Washingtonian has referred to Joe as “solidly ethical” and a “Virginia legend” who “knows how it’s done.” He is a past president of the Virginia State Bar, and holds fellowships in the American College of Trial Lawyers, the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, the Virginia Law Foundation, and American Bar Foundation.
EDWIN WARFIELD: When you’re helping clients during trying situations like divorces and child custody disputes, how do you balance their legal needs with their emotional needs?
JOE CONDO: We family law lawyers are truly the sort of outdated expression of “attorneys and counselors at law.” We have to recognize that we can’t just leave these people on their own emotionally. We have to make sure we maintain some distance because you can’t get emotionally enmeshed with your clients and continue to be effective for them, but you have to provide them the emotional support that they need, recognize your limitations, and recognize when it’s time to send them to a good therapist because their emotional needs are starting to swamp the legal interactions.
My late friend, Betty Thompson, used to say that her motto was “pick ‘em up, dust ‘em off, get ‘em back in traffic.” It’s a homely way of saying it, but there’s a lot of wisdom in that. That’s what we’re supposed to be doing. These people are not supposed to be spending the rest of their lives in a lawyer’s office just because their marriage broke up. They’re not supposed to be leaving a big chunk of their estate in a lawyer’s office just because their marriage broke up. The task is get ‘em through this process as efficiently and cost effectively as possible, and let ‘em get back about the business of living their lives. I find that to be extremely satisfying about this practice.
I do think that separates me from the rest of the lawyers. I think that one way to put it is helping these people get past what they’ll never get over and showing them that there is life after divorce, and in many ways it’s going to be better, and they’re going to be fine. In giving them that reassurance—that the rest of their lives is going to be fine—is very satisfying to us, and a lot of people in this profession—and it’s not to denigrate them, but they just haven’t come by the insights that I have, and I’ve been doing it a lot longer than most people have. These cases are driving ‘em nuts. They’re not focusing on the big picture and they’re not having their clients focus on the big picture and I think that does set me apart from the other people—this philosophy of “let’s get these people through this, get them a decent deal, let them get back to being people.”
ABOUT OFFIT KURMAN
Offit Kurman is one of the fastest-growing, full-service law firms in the Mid-Atlantic region. With over 120 attorneys offering a comprehensive range of services in virtually every legal category, the firm is well positioned to meet the needs of dynamic businesses and the people who own and operate them. Our ten offices in the Mid-Atlantic region serve clients in the entire state of Maryland, the Washington DC metropolitan area, Northern Virginia, Philadelphia, Harrisburg, Delaware, New Jersey, and New York City. At Offit Kurman, we are our clients’ most trusted legal advisors, professionals who help maximize and protect business value and personal wealth. In every interaction, we consistently maintain our client’s confidence by remaining focused on furthering their objectives and achieving their goals in an efficient manner. Trust, knowledge, confidence—in a partner, that’s perfect.
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