Joseph Condo
Divorce Law - Tysons Corner, VA

It's a little ironic that divorce law became my line of work, because I'm fairly conflict-averse by nature - at least in my personal life. Sure, I've handled my share of high-conflict cases in my career, but I'm seeing fewer and fewer of them. That's a good thing. Things like people getting into shoving matches or slashing each other's tires - that kind of extracurricular stuff. I really don't want to put up with any of it.

The cases I handle nowadays are more sophisticated than ever - from a property-valuation and equity standpoint. The level of expertise needed, across so many disciplines, ERISA and pension law, tax law, commercial law, is really greater than ever. That's why a lot of lawyers just stay away from divorce law: It's too complicated, too hard, too scary.

Much of the process depends on the people involved. More than 90% of these cases we take on settle - and I am always inclined to settle. Very rarely is litigation in our clients' interest. A lot of the time litigation is needless, pointless - and only a reflection of the people pursuing it.

But being an experienced litigator certainly helps my clients. It's the prospect of litigation, with its enormous expense, personal trauma and unpredictability, that helps people keep their eye on the ball, which is achieving a fair settlement that will last.

Thanks in part to the Internet, clients coming into our office seem better informed and better prepared for the divorce process. They have a better sense of what they are in for. They know it's likely to be unpleasant, for a while at least. But overall I'd say that clients have more realistic expectations, and that's a good thing.

I've lived my life - and managed my career - focusing on little things, like being respectful, being decent to people. I never saw anyone who treated others poorly get what they wanted. You have to care, and people have to know that you care. And I expect people to be respectful in return: If I feel a client is being chronically abusive of us, being endlessly demanding and needy, every lawyer at our firm knows he or she has standing permission to cut that client loose. Who needs behavior that's shortening your life?

In many respects this is the most satisfying time of my career. I am surrounded by many young and talented lawyers, and we have a tremendous firm. No prima donnas, no back-stabbing. We manage by consensus; and we get things done.

So many people have jobs they are not crazy about. But I am not one of them. Never have been. I love every day - I'm doing what I was put on this earth to do.

Joseph Condo
"I've never seen anyone who treated others poorly get what he or she wanted. You have to care, and people have to know that you care."
Phone: (703) 745-1800
Fax: (703) 745-1835
LeMoyne College, BA, 1970
Catholic University of America,, JD, 1973
2017-09-26 10:18:55