AACFL is committed to enhancing the legal profession through the financial education of family law practitioners. Learn how a top Florida firm has discovered the value of the CFL credential. We spoke with J. Christopher Lombardo, senior partner of Woodward, Pires & Lombardo, PA about why his firm chose to enroll in the CFL course and how they have benefited from the training.
How many attorneys are at your firm?
Why did you decide to join AACFL or take the CFL credential?
Because we tend to do high net worth dissolutions of marriage so training and seminars that are designed to educate about personal and corporate financials are always beneficial. Given the complexity of entities and of compensation packages, the CFL seminars were extremely helpful in understanding how different systems work. Since we tend to represent the non-monied spouse, we have to be able to determine how marital assets and income can be manipulated to ensure that our client is actually receiving a fair resolution. The seminars are informative and valuable. It nice to be able to review the seminars again as a refresher since the best approach is to be able when you need to know more.
Why was AACFL uniquely positioned or qualified to help you?
Because Academies of this nature open up a network of resources that will provide sounding boards. It is impossible to have a handle on every type of entity structure, compensation plan or unique valuation method, the next best thing is to have a network that you can access to share information and learn from each other. This type of Academy is invaluable.
What were your expected outcomes from working with AACFL?
First, to be able to participate in a well thought out certification process that not only tested one’s knowledge but also expanded one’s knowledge financial litigation. Second, to earn recognition for the years of experience in financial litigation that cannot be distinguished through other means.
How has the course benefited you and your firm?
I have had every financial litigator in my firm registered for this program. It has become a bit of an internal competition among the associates, which is welcomed. It has been the genesis of many discussions within the firm about how transactions and entities are structured, what to look for when trying to determine if a party has manipulated their income or assets, what valuation methods are best suited for particular assets and how to effectively and efficiently cross examine financial experts. Unlike other seminars and programs, we have found that the attorneys in this office have been comparing notes and discussing the contents of the seminars as it relates to our practice and cases. These collegiate style discussions were unexpected but are truly beneficial as it keeps our senior attorneys on their toes and provides a valuable learning tool for our less experienced attorneys. Any time we can promote discussion as group we seize the opportunity as it only makes us better at what we do.
How have you used your AACFL credential?
We are now featuring the credential in all of our marketing efforts. We have also done press releases.
Do you have a testimonial or quote you can share?
“The CFL certification provides a foundational understanding of financial transactions that encourages the litigator to peel back the onion to get to the core of the dispute.” – Christopher Lombardo, Senior Partner, Chairman of Litigation Division: Woodward, Pires & Lombardo, PA.
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