Michele focuses her practice exclusively on family law. Since 2002, Michele has been a Certified Family Law Specialist, certified by the State Bar of California, Board of Legal Specialization. Michele handles dissolution of marriage, legal separation and annulment actions, paternity, custody, move-away/relocation cases, grandparent visitation rights, post judgment support, set aside and enforcement matters, the preparation or review of pre-marital and post-marital agreements and domestic violence restraining order cases. Michele represents her clients in simple dissolutions with the same vigor she represents clients in complex matters, which matters may involve business valuations, income analysis, tracing, division of property and custody evaluations. Michele also acts as a neutral mediator, as well as represents clients in mediation. Michele volunteers her time to sit as a Judge Pro Tem in Small Claims Court and as a Family Law Settlement Judge for the San Diego Superior Courts. She is also admitted to practice before the US District Court, Southern District of California.
Michele is extensively involved in drafting and reviewing family law legislation in California and frequently testifies before the Senate and Assembly Judiciary Committees on family law. She has also written numerous articles on family law and has presented state-wide on family law issues.
- 2019 West Coast Top Rated Lawyers, ALM
- Martindale-Hubbell® AV Preeminent Rating
- The Best Lawyers in America® - 2018-2019 (Family Law)
- "Top Lawyers," San Diego Magazine, 2016-2018
- "Legend in Legislation," State Bar of California, Family Law Section, 2016
- "Best of the Bar," San Diego Business Journal, 2015-2016
- San Diego Super Lawyers®, 2014-2019 (Family Law)
- “Super Lawyers/Southern California 2014: The Top Women,” Los Angeles Magazine, September 2014
- San Diego Metro Top Family Law Attorneys in San Diego County, 2011-2012
- Our City, San Diego, Top Family Law Attorneys, 2009-2010
- California Lawyers Association, Family Law Section – Advisor to Board of Directors, Legislation Oversight and Family Law Representative (2019-2020)
- Association of Family and Conciliation Courts (AFCC), California Chapter - President - 2018
- Judge Pro Tem, San Diego County Superior Court, Family Law Settlement Judge (2003-present)
- Judge Pro Tem, Small Claims Court, San Diego County (2010-present)
- ADR/Mediation Panel for Family Law, San Diego County Certified Family Law Specialists (2009-present)
- California Lawyers Association – Board of Representatives and Co-Chair Government Affairs Committee
- State Bar of California, Family Law Section – Advisor, Affirmative Legislation/Developing Legislation (2010-present); Assembly Judiciary Working Groups, AB 2344, AB 1843, AB 2089, SB 115, AB 458, SB 1255 (2013-2016), Executive Committee Member, Affirmative Legislation Chair (2007-2010), Liaison to San Diego Regional Standing Committee (2007-present), All Sections State Bar Task Force (2016), Elkins Task Force Working Group (2009-2010). Contributed to drafting and enacting family law bills: AB 414, AB 161, AB 522, SB 1482, AB 1679, AB 2767, AB 459 (2007-present), San Diego Regional Standing Committee Co-Chair (2006-2007), testifies before the State Legislature on Family Law bills (2007-present)
- Association of Family and Conciliation Courts – CA Chapter – President and Board of Directors (2018), President Elect (2016), Board of Directors (2010-present), Executive Committee, Secretary (2014-2015), Membership Committee (2010-present), Membership Committee Chair (2012-present), 2012 CA Chapter Conference Committee (2011-2012), 2015 Southern California CA Chapter Conference Committee (2014), Association of Family and Conciliation Courts – National Chapter – Member (2010-present), 2017 California Chapter Conference Committee (2016)
- Association of Certified Family Law Specialists – Board of Directors and the Director of Legislation (2014-present), Vice-Chair, Legislative Advisory Committee (2014-present), contributed to drafting AB 2586 (2014), Legislative Advisory Committee (2011-present); 2016 Spring Seminar Conference Committee, Member (2009-present)
- Legislative Involvement, Stakeholder Working Groups – SB 1255, Marriage of Davis Legislation; AB 1843, Electronic Reporting in Family law
- Court Funding Action Committee, San Diego County Bar Association (2014-2015)
- San Diego County Bar Association, Family Law Section, Certified Family Law Specialists – Executive Committee (2007-2010), Chair, Legislation (2007-2013), Chair, Local Rules Committee (2011-2013), Member, Elkins Working Group (2009-2010), San Diego Family Law Action Committee (2009-2010), Publicity Committee (2005-2006), Conference of Delegates, Family Law Floor Leader (2005-2006)
- San Diego County Bar Association – Member (2000-present)
- San Diego Family Law Bar Association – Member (2013-present)
- North Park Toyland Parade – Board Member (2005-2012), Toys for Tots collaboration (2012), Politicians and Dignitaries (2005-2012), Fundraising (2006-2010)
- North Park Community Association – Board Member, North Park Parking Management Working Group, Concert Committee, Renaissance Awards (2005-2011), Member (2004-present)
- United Way – Women’s Leadership Council
- JD, University of San Diego School of Law, 1994
- BA (Political Science and Spanish), University of California, Riverside, 1989
- Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia, 1988
- Real Talk San Diego, December 22, 2016
- Co-presenter. "Beyond 4320: Interplay Between Spousal Support and Domestic Violence," ACFLS 24th Annual Spring Seminar, Rancho Mirage, CA, April 2, 2016.
- Presenter. "Community Property Presumptions and Transmutation Agreements," State Bar of California, Family Law Section, July 30, 2015.
- "Covering New Ground In Real Estate & Tracing," SDFLBA, San Diego, CA, March 4, 2015.
- “Family Law Discovery,” North County Certified Law Specialists, Vista, CA, October 16, 2014.
- Co-presenter. “Using Your Mental Health Expert Without Crossing the Line,” co-presenter, Association of Certified Family Law Specialists, Bay Area Chapter, Oakland, CA, April 2014
- Co-presenter. “Use and Abuse of Experts: Use of Psychological Experts,” San Diego County Bar Association, Family Law Section, San Diego, CA, Fall 2013.
- Panelist. “Recent Developments in Family Law: Cases and Statutes,” San Diego Certified Family Law Specialists, San Diego, CA, Winter 2013.
- Co-presenter. “What’s New in 2012? Changes to Family and Juvenile Rules of Court,” San Diego County Bar Association, Family Law Section, Webinar, April 2012.
- Panelist. “Domestic Violence Institute and Mock Trial,” AFCC-CA Annual Conference, February 2012.
- "State Bar of California's 2015 Judicial Officer of the Year Award Bestowed Upon Honorable Maureen F. Hallahan," Family Law News, The State Bar of California, 2015.
- “AB 2586: Shocking family law faux pas fixed in a flash,” Daily Journal, January 21, 2015.
- "ACFLS's Anti-Boblistt Legislation is Signed into Law," ACFLS Family Law Specialist, Association of Certified Family Law Specialists
- “Flexcom Sponsored AB 414 Reenacts Section 4326 As Urgency Legislation: And Fixes the Gap so No One Falls Between the Cracks,” Family Law News, The State Bar of California, August 25, 2014.
- Co-author. “Is There a Right to a Record?” Family Law News, The State Bar of California, 2012.