The Florida Bar Family Law Section Monthly Newsletter

2018 Visionary Award Recipient David Manz and Section Chair Nicole L. Goetz
I hope that all of you were able to join us at the annual Marital & Family Law Review Course. It sold out this year, with more than 1,600 attendees! We had a wonderful event with the help of our many talented speakers. The course covered a number of topics and this year included several new areas. A special thanks goes out to the Marital and Family Law Review Course Committee. Chair Philip Wartenberg and fellow members Bonnie Sockel-Stone, Heather Apicella and Sarah Kay --- as well as Section Administrator Gabrielle Tollok  ---   did a phenomenal job this year running this event. Coincidentally, Phil is also this month's EC Spotlight! 
I would like to thank the AAML, Florida Chapter, our valued co-sponsor in the program. I would also like to especially thank AAML Chapter President and former Family Law Section Chair Peter Gladstone, our perennial Chapter Liaison and former Section Chair Jorge Cestero and Susan Duggar Stafford, Administrative Director of the AAML, for their assistance in making this event a success! 
Mark your calendars for next year's course and mid-year meetings. They will take place January 24-26 at a new venue, the Gaylord Palms Resort and Convention Center in Orlando.
I am very proud to announce that former Section Chair David Lawrence Manz was awarded this year's Visionary Award for his outstanding service and invaluable contributions to the practice of family law throughout the State of Florida. The Visionary Award is presented each year by the chair of the section at the annual Marital and Family Law Review Course. I was honored to present David with the Visionary Award this year. David, a practicing attorney for more than 30 years, was my mentor in section work. When I first became involved with the section, he was actively involved with the Equitable Distribution Committee. Through that committee and his involvement with the section he worked hard to bring our special equity law in line with the more recently enacted equitable distribution statute. This year, David's work on the Kaaa fix legislation has made it to Tallahassee and has been a key issue for the section during this year's legislative term. Through the years, David has made incredible contributions to the practice by chairing the Board Certification Committee, leading the AAML, Florida Chapter, and after working his way through leading numerous committees, chairing the Family Law Section. In addition to his leadership roles, David has worked diligently to address legislation affecting Florida's families, has written numerous articles and has lectured extensively on family law. Not surprisingly, access to justice is David's passion. He actively takes cases through Put Something Back, a local non-profit out of Miami, and handles local cases on a pro bono basis. After Hurricane Irma, David selflessly gave his time to assist dispossessed residents in Monroe County, his home county and an area hardest hit by the hurricane. Presently serving as a member of the Board of Directors for The Florida Bar Foundation, and previously recognized as the 2017 Florida Bar President's Pro Bono Service Award winner for the 16th Circuit, David demonstrates what each of us should aspire to as practitioners. David shared with me the following quote that resonates with him:
It is not the responsibility of knights errant to discovery whether the afflicted, the enchained and the oppressed whom they encounter on the road are reduced to the circumstances and suffer this distress for their vices, or for their virtues:  the knight's sole responsibility is to see them as people in need, having eyes only for the sufferings, not their misdeeds.
---  Cervantes
I hope that each of you will be inspired by David's work, and find ways to become more active in improving our practice area.  

Nicole L. Goetz, Esq., Naples
Chair, Family Law Section of The Florida Bar

Family Law Section Supports Florida Bar Foundation Children's Legal Services

The Family Law Section on Jan. 27 presented a  $75,000 contribution to The Florida Bar Foundation to enhance the reach of its statewide Children's Legal Services grants.  The foundation's priorities for its Children's Legal Services grants include representation of foster youth and access to special education, medical, developmental and mental health services that are required under law. Gifts to the foundation from the Children's Legal Services campaign on the annual Florida Bar fee statement help support these grants, along with proceeds from the Kids Deserve Justice license plate initiative. Foundation Executive Director Bruce Blackwell accepted the donation and expressed sincere thanks for the section's support.
A Passport to Success ...  14th Annual Kozyak Minority Mentoring Picnic
By Robin J. Scher, Esq.
Read the full article at this link.

For the 8th year in a row, the Family Law Section is proud to be a sponsor of the Kozyak Minority Mentoring PicnicThe section increased its sponsorship of this worthy cause to bronze level and has donated $2,000 to assist the Kozyak Minority Mentoring Foundation in its efforts to increase diversity in our profession by providing mentors for those who want them. The picnic is Feb. 3 at Zoo Miami from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • We need at least 10 members to help set up, man the table and clean up. As part of its sponsorship, the section mans a table to share information and materials on section membership. We speak with hundreds of minority students and new graduates from across the state and network with numerous other sponsors. If you can work a two-hour shift, please email Robin J. Scher your preferred shift and your cell phone number.
  • Register online at this link.

Even if you cannot work the event on behalf of the section, we hope you will plan to attend (bring your family too) and stop by our table to say hello.

Upcoming CLEs
  • Feb. 28, 2018.   Enforcement of Equitable DistributionNow That You Got It, How Do You Get It?  (audio webcast) - Reuben Doupe and Elisha Roy. (Noon) 1 hour.
  • March 2, 2018. Money Matters: Making it Rain for Your Client* (live, all-day event) location TBD.
  • April 19, 2018. 2018 Family Law Section Legislative Update  (audio webcast) - Bonnie Sockel-Stone and Aimee Gross. (Noon) 2 hours.
* Pending Florida Bar CLE credit approval.
Aftermarket CLEs

If you missed the live presentations of Family Law Section CLEs, many are available for purchase in CD or DVD format. Visit this link on The Florida Bar website, and filter your search by Family Law in the "Sponsored By" menu on the left. The options include recent CLE courses such as  2017 Tax Reform Bill Explained and 2017 Case Law Update.

Seeking additional CLE credit? Click here for on-demand online CLE courses. 
Enforcement of Equitable Distribution: Now That You Got It, How Do You Get It?

Feb. 28, 2018
Noon to 1 p.m.
Audio Webcast
Reuben DoupĂ© and Elisha Roy will discuss the issues surrounding enforcement of equitable distribution provisions, including when contempt is appropriate, the nuances of enforcing court rulings and settlement agreements and what to do if the property to be distributed is dissipated or one party fails to pay a monetary obligation. Guidance also will be offered on crafting language into settlement agreements that will make enforcement easier.   

CLE Credits: 1.0 General, 1.0 Marital & Family Law
Section Members $75
 Non-Section Members $130
Alberto Romero Making a Difference Award

Please submit nominations by May 31, 2018, for the  Family Law Section of The Florida Bar's 2018 Alberto Romero Making a Difference Award. The award recognizes the work of section members and affiliates who provide outstanding pro bono services, engage in significant volunteer community activities that improve the lives of Florida's children and families ---  and encourage other section members to volunteer. Magistrate Diane Kirigin, a former section chair, founded the award.  Eddie Stephens received the award in 2017.

The Alberto Romero Making a Difference Awards will be presented at the Family Law Section's Annual Luncheon in June. The section will select one member and one affiliate member to honor for their service and commitment to their communities. If you have questions, please contact  Robin Scher at (561) 626-5640 or Details are at this link.
Family Law Section Sponsors  

Platinum Level


Gold Level

Bronze Level

Stephens' Squibs

Click HERE for this month's Squibs family law case summaries.

Squib of the Month Lisa Marie Macci v. Jaeger, 42 Fla.L.Weekly D2575 (Fla. 4th DCA 2017).  Lawyer's charging lien could not be applied to award of retroactive undifferentiated support needed for the necessities of life.

AAML, Florida and Family Law Section 2018 Marital & Family Law Review Course

Here's a sneak preview of photos taken during the Jan. 19 review course in Orlando. Stay tuned for an email update when the photos are posted to the Family Law Section website and social media!

Philip Wartenberg during a recent visit to Bermuda. Wartenberg is Florida Bar board certified in marital and family law and is a shareholder at  Allen Dell, P.A., in Tampa.
Executive Council
Member Profile: 
Philip Wartenberg
Who is someone who inspires you? My wife Karen.
How do you define success? Accomplishing the goals I set for myself both in my career and in life generally.
Why do you practice family law? I appreciate that we are helping people transition from what was probably a very bad period of their lives to hopefully a better and healthier place.
What is something few people know about you? That I have a fraternal twin brother that lives in Bartow.
Favorite quote? "If you don't have the time to do it right, when will you have the time to do it over?" - Coach John Wooden.
Favorite family law case? Pimm v. Pimm, 601 So.2d 534 (Fla. 1992).
Favorite book? On the Road, Jack Kerouac.
Favorite TV show? The Office (UK version).
Favorite song lyric? "Sign, sign, everywhere a sign, blockin' out the scenery, breakin' my mind. Do this, don't do that, can't you read the sign???" Five-Man Electrical Band.
Favorite superhero? Batman.
Best place you have traveled? Bermuda in 2017 (the picture is from the Lobster Pot in Hamilton).
Proudest accomplishment within the section? Chairing the Review Course Committee this past January.
What benefits do you receive as a result of your section participation? I have enjoyed the friendships and networking with other family law attorneys from around the state.
Something we did not know about you? I used to spend my holidays from college working at the Gap at Countryside Mall in Clearwater.
Coffee or tea? Coffee.
If you were stranded on a desert island, what three items could you not live without? My wife, our camping tent, and an iPhone (with solar charger) with all my music downloaded on it.
NEW: Semi-Annual
Family Law Section Sponsorships

Take advantage of the Family Law Section's new, half-year sponsorship opportunities to gain  excellent exposure for your firm or business!

The section also offers a number of event-based sponsorship opportunities for companies interested in connecting with our nearly 4,000 attorney members. 
Sponsorship of The Florida Bar Family Law Section is an excellent way to showcase your company. If you are interested in being involved, or have any questions whatsoever, please do not hesitate to contact Sponsorship Committee Chairs Matt Lundy and Beth Luna, or our section administrator Gabrielle Tollok.

The Family Law Section WANTS YOU to write for one of three publications: The Florida Bar Journal, the Family Law Section's  Commentator and/or FAMSEG. For more information contact C. Debra Welch or  Lori Caldwell-Carr.
Journal : To be considered for publication in The Florida Bar Journal, the article should be scholarly and relate in some manner to family law. It should be 12-15 pages in length, complete with end notes. 
Commentator : The Family Law Section's glossy quarterly magazine. Articles could range from substantive articles to advice about lifestyle and wellness. 
FAMSEG : Have an announcement? Pictures of a section event? Something light and fluffy? FAMSEG is your place! If you have any of the above or suggestions to improve the look and feel of FAMSEG, please contact Editor Ron Kauffman.
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