About Lisa

I am passionate about family law issues and write about them routinely for The Legal Intelligencer’s online family law column. If you need help with adoption, custody, divorce, name change, protection from abuse or support issues in either Philadelphia or surrounding Pennsylvania counties – or Burlington, Camden and Gloucester counties in New Jersey – I’m here for you, either as an advocate or mediation coach. I co-chair the Philadelphia Bar Association’s Equitable Distribution Committee, and have been named as a Super Lawyer in Pennsylvania and listed on the First Judicial District’s Pro Bono Roll of Honor for exemplary pro bono work.

Education

Villanova University School of Law
Villanova, PA
J.D. 2000

Bucknell University
Lewisburg, PA
B.S. in Business Administration 1997

Bar Admissions

United States Supreme Court

Pennsylvania

New Jersey

Work Experience

Berner Klaw & Watson LLP/Berner & Klaw
Philadelphia, PA 2007-Present

Partner. Practice includes all aspects of family law in both Pennsylvania and New Jersey, including divorce, alimony, custody, child support, domestic violence and domestic tort claims.

Stark & Stark, P.C.
Lawrenceville, NJ 2001-2007

Practiced family law solely in both New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Maintained own client caseload while assisting supervisor attorneys on larger, higher conflict divorce cases. Responsibilities included initial consultations, advising, pleading preparation, motion preparation and oral argument regarding enforcement of litigant’s rights, pendente lite matters, alimony modification/termination and custody and visitation; prepared for and responsible for settlement conferences, drafting/finalizing settlement agreements, trial preparation, preparing and representing clients in motions, trials, domestic violence matters, and municipal matters which stemmed from domestic violence incidences.

Raffaele & Puppio, LLP
Media, PA 2000-2001

Practiced family law predominantly, with some civil and criminal experience. Maintained own client caseload for over fifty clients from the initial consultation through the divorce. Responsibilities included preparing and representing clients in protection from abuse, custody, support and equitable distribution conferences and hearings.

Bar Association Activities

Member, Pennsylvania Bar Association (current)

Member, Philadelphia Bar Association, Family Law Section (current)

Co-Chair, Philadelphia Bar Association, Equitable Distribution Committee (current)

Member, New Jersey State Bar Association, Family Law Section (current)

Member, American Bar Association, Family Law Section

Member, Bucks County Bar Association

Court Appointments

Pro Bono Counsel

Lectures / Trainings / Consulting

Anatomy of a Prenuptial Agreement (co-presenter)
Philadelphia Bar Association, Family Law Section

New Social Security Rules Regarding Divorcing Spouses (co-presenter)
Philadelphia Bar Association, Family Law Section

Your First Divorce CaseGeneral Practitioners’ Update (panel)
Pennsylvania Bar Institute Continuing Legal Education

Seventh Annual Family Law Institute (panel)
Pennsylvania Bar Institute Continuing Legal Education

What PA Lawyers Need to Know About New Jersey Family Law Practice (panel)
Pennsylvania Bar Institute Continuing Legal Education

Philadelphia County Domestic Relations Practice-Divorce Process (co-presenter)
Pennsylvania Bar Institute Continuing Legal Education

A Conversation with Susan Rieger, author of The Divorce Papers (panel)
Dual Presentation: The Thomas S. Forkin Family Law and The Nicholas Cipriani American Inns of Court

Slicing Up the Pie:  Property Distribution in Pennsylvania-Alimony Section (co-presenter)
Pennsylvania Bar Institute Continuing Legal Education

Publications

It Should Be PC to Use a PC
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, November 2016)

Common Sense Rules for Parents During Custody Disputes
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, August 2016)

Huss v. Weaver
Berner Klaw & Watson LLP Blog, June 2016

Great Expectations:  Tips for a Healthy Family Law Practice
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, March 2016)

Some Stepparents Have to Pay Child Support in Pennsylvania
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, February 2016)

Tips to Improve Your Law Practice Next Year
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, December 2015)

Divorce:  Time to Change How the Game Is Played
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, November 2015)

Untying the Knots in Clients’ Lives
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, October 2015)

How to Settle a Custody Case at the Outset
Pennsylvania Bar Association, 37 PA Family Lawyer Issue No. 3, September 2015;
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, August 2015)

Should ‘Lost Cause’ Payor Really Have Custody of Child
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, July 2015)

Paternity and Parentage in Same-Sex Marriages
Lisa Shapson, Jennifer Dumin
The Legal Intelligencer (Family Law Supplement, July 2015)

The Cost of Converting ‘I Do’ to ‘I Don’t’
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, June 2015);
New Jersey Law Journal (online, June 2015)

Validity of Common-Law Marriages
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, May 2015)

Changing Custody Schedules With the Seasons
Connecticut Law Tribune (online May 2015)
Modifying Custody Schedules for Child’s Changing Needs
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, April 2015)

Dealing With Unrepresented Parties in Family Law Cases
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, February 2015)

Modern Technology Can Hinder Effective Communication
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, January 2015)

What Would Your Divorce Epitaph Say?
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, November 2014)

Alimony Is Alive and Well in New Jersey
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, October 2014)

Avoiding Surprises at Trial:  Preparing Your Client to Testify
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, September 2014)

Requiring Divorced Parents to Pay for Children’s Post-secondary Education
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, August 2014)

Marriage Equality Finally Arrives in Pennsylvania
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, June 2014)

Is Your Summer Parenting Schedule Ready for Summer Vacation?
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, May 2014)

Getting Referrals and Sustaining a Family Law Practice
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, March 2014)

After the Love Is Gone:  Settling Divorce Cases
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, February 2014)

Defining Marriage in 2013
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, October 2013)

Parenting:  A Journey Without a GPS or Owner’s Manual
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, August 2013)

Disclosure of Child Abuse and Attorney-Client Privilege
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, July 2013)

How to Rein In Emotional Clients
Law Journal Newsletters-The Matrimonial Strategist (online, June 2013)
How to Set Rules and Rein In Emotional Clients
New Jersey Law Journal (online, April 2013)
Setting Rules and Reining in Emotional Clients
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, March 2013)

What Does ‘Proceeding’ Really Mean?
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, May 2013)

We Can Do Better:  Staying Professional as a Family Lawyer
The Legal Intelligencer (online Family Law column, March 2013)

Valuations Challenging in Divorce
Philadelphia Bar Reporter (June 2011)

Boards / Memberships / Community Service

Executive Committee Member, The Nicholas Cipriani American Inn of Court (current)

Co-Chair, Programming Committee, The Nicholas Cipriani American Inn of Court (current)

President, St. Mary Interparochial School Home & School Association (current)

Member, The Thomas S. Forkin Family Law American Inn of Court (NJ)

Secretary, Board of Parents Anonymous of New Jersey

Awards

PA Super Lawyer: 2013-2017*
PA Super Lawyer: Rising Stars Edition 2010
Super Lawyers®, part of Thomson Reuters

Pro Bono Roll of Honor 2009, 2010, 2012, 2013, 2015, 2016 (exemplary pro bono work)
First Judicial District of Pennsylvania

*Chosen by nominations from PA Lawyers, research of periodicals, databases and interviews. All nominees’ background and experience are researched as well.