Areas of Practice
 
Jenna works with people and families who find themselves in crisis and who want to control their lives.
  • Mediation
  • Parenting Coordinator
  • Criminal Defense & Mental Health Law
  • Guardian ad Litem for Incompetent Divorce Defendants
  • Guardian ad Litem for Children


Mediation:

In mediation sessions, Jenna assists the disputing parties resolve their disagreement by facilitating their discussions and guiding them to appropriate resources and other professional service providers.  Jenna has seen how family mediation services can result in sound decision-making, reconciliation of divergent views,clearing the air, lessening resentment, greater understanding, improved communication, and transformation of relationships.  In matters where the court will need to become involved, for instance the granting of a divorce or the establishment of parenting obligations, family law mediation services save clients considerable amounts of money with the added benefit of avoiding hurtful litigation. 

Jenna's role is to promote discussion and negotiation that allows the conflicting participants the opportunity to exchange divergent views, ask questions, discuss difficult topics and find solutions.  Jenna's role is to act as a neutral third party assisting the participants to explore and find mutually acceptable solutions.  And, it works.

Jenna welcomes offers family mediation services to clients with matters involving the following:

  • Divorce
  • Child Custody
  • Cohabitation & Non-Marital Parenting
  • Marriage
  • Elder Care
  • Adult Sibling Disputes regarding Estates and Planning for Aging Parent
  • Same-Sex Couples
  • Other Family Disputes

Family mediation generally entails a series of meetings with the clients where Jenna promotes effective communication and decision making about the issues that need to be addressed.  Specifically trained to help family members facilitate useful discussion, Jenna guides her clients through considering possible solutions and options to address various problems through brainstorming, experience, and attentive listening to one another.  Realistic solutions are proposed and considered.  The clients have control over the process. 

What generally results is the creation of a sound, mutually-acceptable agreement to address the parties’ particular circumstances.

Family Mediation is not psychotherapy, marital counseling, or legal representation.  While Jenna is an attorney, she does not represent mediation clients as an attorney.  During the family mediation process, Jenna will share legal information but is precluded by ethical rules to give legal advice.  This is of great benefit to those clients who will find themselves in court so that a judge can sign off on the agreement reached in mediation:  You get Jenna's legal knowledge and legal information while crafting your own solutions.  Knowing how the courts handle legal agreements, Jenna will be able to save you time, and legal costs of your own attorney -- should you choose to hire one, drafting and re-drafting non-compliant legal agreements.



Parenting Coordinator:

After parents have decided to separate or divorce, a very real issue can be open communication between them regarding their children.  Sometimes there is a history of domestic violence; sometimes there is a history of allegations of abuse or neglect of the children.  More often, the parents simply cannot speak to one another without anger, frustration, or contempt.  In an effort to keep the parents out of court, many divorce attorneys include, in the language of the court-approved divorce agreement, the assignment of a parenting coordinator.  Jenna works with parents as an impartial intermediary to resolve disputes so that parents can avoid the cost and time commitment of going back to court.


 
Criminal Defense & Mental Health Law:

Prior to establishing the Holistic Law Group in 2008, Jenna successfully completed extensive training and worked as a staff attorney for the Committee for Public Counsel Services.  From 2006 to 2008 -- while with the Committee, Jenna worked with an array of adults facing a wide range of criminal charges. Jenna has successfully argued Motions to Suppress and is undefeated at trial.

Toward the end of Jenna's time with the Committee for Public Counsel Services, she successfully completed extensive training in mental health law.

Jenna has had a great many clients whose mental health has had a direct bearing on the outcomes of their cases.  Jenna's knowledge of the commitment process, both voluntary and involuntary, and an appreciation of the nexus between criminal law and mental health law have been assets to her clients.



Guardian ad Litem for Children:

Jenna serves the Probate and Family Courts of Middlesex and Worcester Counties as a Guardian ad Litem in cases involving divorcing/litigating parents to make recommendations as to "best interest" of the children.  Jenna takes appointments from the bench and also private-hire cases.



Guardian ad Litem for Incompetent Divorce Defendants:

When people are enduring the break up of a marriage, the pursuit of child support, the negotiations around visitation, or the establishment of parental rights, among other legal matters, it can oftentimes be the case that the defendant is not able to fruitfully participate in the process.  If the defendant is deemed by the court to be "incompetent" for a myriad of different reasons manifesting in a myriad of behaviors, the court may appoint a Guardian ad Litem to "step into the shoes" of the divorce defendant. 

Jenna's former experience as a social worker, along with her legal training, provides her with the requisite skills to dissecting intricate and intimate family law issues facing these defendants.  She has served the Probate and Family Court of Middlesex ensuring a fair and reasonable outcome for the defendant.