FAMILY LAW: FOR FOREIGN SERVICE PROFESSIONALS
As a Foreign Service professional, the long hours, stress, and unique circumstances that come with overseas assignments can take a toll on your marriage. If you’re considering separation or divorce, you need a family attorney who is familiar with the Foreign Service Act of 1980, as amended, and who has a solid track record of helping Foreign Service professionals and their spouses navigate family law. Alexandria family law attorney Carolyn Grimes, a founding partner of Wade Grimes Friedman Meinken and Leischner PLLC, has been assisting Foreign Service professionals for more than 26 years.
ABOUT CAROLYN GRIMES
Ms. Grimes is a frequent speaker, with extensive experience working with military, federal, civilian and Foreign Service retirement issues. She is not only a highly effective traditional litigator, but is also a practitioner of collaborative law as well as being a mediator, and is a member of the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals (IACP).
Among her many accomplishments and extensive service, Ms. Grimes is a Past President of the Alexandria Bar Association, and participated in the American Bar Association program offering legal assistance to victims of the September 11, 2001, attacks. (Full bio here.)
VIRGINIA FAMILY LAW REPRESENTATION
Virginia has a particular jurisdiction statute regarding Foreign Service officers who were in Virginia prior to the most recent overseas assignment (because of the high number of foreign Service officers who live in Virginia undergoing language training at the Foreign Service Language Institute) so many Foreign Service Officers and their spouses can qualify under Virginia law to handle the divorce in Virginia. Also, if you are a Virginia resident, whether stationed overseas or in the U.S., Ms. Grimes can help. She is duly licensed to practice in the Commonwealth, and as a member of the Virginia Bar Association, she can file court actions and apprise you of laws specific to the Commonwealth of Virginia.
If you are overseas and considering separation or divorce, as the U.S. Department of State’s Family Liaison Office itself notes, consulting with legal counsel in your home jurisdiction while still abroad helps you obtain:
- Guidance on separation agreements and the types of documents that should or should not be signed before departure.
- Advice about actions that may protect you against charges of desertion.
- Assist in temporary child-custody issues.
Ms. Grimes handles many consultations with people who are still overseas before any actions toward divorce or separation are taken.
KNOWLEDGE, INSIGHT, COMPASSION
Ms. Grimes is compassionate and experienced in dealing with divorce cases, as well as child custody and other family law issues involving children. She is very familiar with State Department and other federal retirement programs. And she is sensitive to the delicate balance Foreign Service professionals strive to achieve between family and career.
When you’re ready to call, we’re ready to help. Reach us at 703-836-9030, or click the ‘contact’ link in our menu.
- American Foreign Service Association: http://www.afsa.org/divorce-foreign-service
- U.S. Department of State Family Liaison Office: https://www.state.gov/bureaus-offices/under-secretary-for-management/bureau-of-human-resources/family-liaison-office/