December 13, 2021

Nicole King First-Chairs Winning Trial in Pro Bono Divorce Proceeding

2 min

Nicole King, an associate in Venable’s Commercial Litigation Practice, represented a pro bono client in a divorce action filed in a California superior court for Los Angeles County. The client sought spousal support, among other things, because she was not eligible or authorized to work or earn a living in the United States during the marriage (and to date), and was physically abused, raped, imprisoned, and manipulated by her husband, the petitioner.  After giving an opening statement, catching the petitioner in several lies on cross-examination, and enabling the client to tell her story on direct examination, including getting key evidence admitted into the record, the judge ruled in the client’s favor and against the petitioner, who was represented by a seasoned family law attorney with 24 years of practice under his belt.

The judge ultimately issued a judgment declaring the parties divorced, found that the client’s claimed date of separation was the effective end date for the marriage, and ordered the petitioner to make 14 spousal support payments to the client from January 2022 to July 2022, a period of half of the parties’ 14-month marriage.

Ms. King received trial strategy advice along the way from San Francisco partner John Worden, which is a testament to Venable’s commitment to pro bono work, and the work’s importance to the legal profession and our world.