May 22, 2024


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Frances Shefter, Rockville, Maryland Education Law Attorney – My Shingle


Welcome to MyShingle’s series celebrating Female-Owned and Mom-Owned Regulation Companies.  This profile features Frances Shefter, an schooling regulation lawyer in Rockville, Maryland. 

What is your name? 

Frances Shefter

Regulation Faculty attended and yr of graduation.

Stetson University School of Law, 2005

Title, place(s) and URL of Regulation Firm.

Shefter Law, PA

110 N. Washington Street, Suite 350

Rockville, MD 20850

Summarize your work expertise, if any, prior to opening your company. The two as a lawyer or prior to becoming a attorney.

I began my schooling with an undergraduate degree in early childhood schooling from Towson College.  Following a handful of several years of training normal training, I received a master’s degree in exclusive training from Florida Intercontinental College.  Just after seven a long time in the classroom, teaching standard and special schooling, I moved to an administrative instructing position as the Unique Education Coordinator.  Two several years afterwards, I resolved I was not earning as much of a big difference in children’s life as I required.  I made a decision that regulation university was the remedy.  Soon right after graduating from Stetson University Higher education of Legislation with a Certification of Concentration in Advocacy, I opened the firm, Shefter Legislation, PA, in Rockville, MD, where by I aid family members have a Anxiety-Free of charge IEP™ working experience.  The firm’s primary place of apply is distinctive instruction regulation in Maryland and the District of Columbia. 

Because opening her organization, Ms. Shefter has assisted people with all techniques in the IEP and 504 approach.  She prides herself in examining all of a child’s college records in purchase to help households in deciding upon the correct route for their child.  Ms. Shefter then helps manual the family by each and every move of the approach.  She has assisted family members in acquiring eligibility for products and services, non-community placements, 504 designs and assuring that the IEP ambitions are suitable.  

Taking Ms. Shefter out of the classroom did not get rid of her enthusiasm for teaching.  She hates when educational institutions get edge of family’s lack of awareness of the laws and techniques of the particular education and learning course of action.  She has dozens of brief films on her YouTube channel that explain unique elements of the IEP course of action, IEP elements, 504 plans and other parental rights.  Additionally, she sends out newsletters with additional info on every subject.  Look at out her web page at to indicator up for her newsletter and a hyperlink to subscribe to her YouTube channel.

When did you get started your company? 

February 2011

 Why did you come to a decision to start out your have regulation company? 

Honestly, mainly because I was a contract lawyer in Washington, DC and I could not obtain a further position that match.  I understood I required to exercise schooling regulation to combine all of my education and understanding but could not obtain a agency that in good shape with my main values and was selecting.

What was the response you obtained from loved ones, pals, colleagues, regulation faculty classmates, judges, etc…when you declared your conclusion to start?

My spouse, Seth, explained go for it.  He was so supportive and encouraging.  I never bear in mind telling everyone else right before I did it.  I was on the DC Superior Court docket CCAN panel as an Education Attorney, and anyone realized about that.  But I was at first operating as a contract attorney when I received appointed to the panel.   When I quit contracting and started out concentrating on my firm only, I just did it and did not really inform any one other than Seth.   

What practice parts does your business concentrate on?

My company entirely methods Education and learning Law.

What dimensions is your company?

1 attorney, 1 section-time advocate, 1 administrative assistant and 1 social media assistant.

Do you observe entire-time or element-time

Full time

What tends to make your regulation agency exclusive and different from any other regulation company in the planet?

My training background and capacity to relate to everybody at an IEP table.   My education and learning and operate encounter offers me the exclusive potential to be able to act as an legal professional and an advocate at all meetings.  I am also the only man or woman at an IEP table that can actually say she has been in virtually every seat at much more than a single conference.  For the duration of my instructing profession I participated in IEP conferences as a regular education trainer, a distinctive education teacher and as the LEA consultant.  I have also attended IEP conferences as an lawyer and as a mother.  This provides an more amount of knowledge to the table due to the fact I can definitely relate to how her consumers are feeling in the course of the procedure. 

How lots of young children do you have and what ages are they?

Chana is 8 and Esther is pretty much 5

Has turning out to be a mom motivated your decision to begin or keep on to operate your personal law company? If so, how? 

Shortly after Seth and I got married, we commenced fertility cure.  It was neat focusing on both developing my new business and working on obtaining expecting.  Getting Chana, and then Esther, strengthened my feeling that opening my firm was the suitable selection.  I have the flexibility to be a mom and show up at faculty capabilities for the duration of the day when currently being a purpose design for my children.  I try to remember increasing up considering I could not be a good mom and get the job done comprehensive time.  Nicely, I now proved myself incorrect.  I can be an wonderful mom, a whole-time law firm, AND operate my personal regulation agency.

If you are married/residing in a fully commited relationship with a partner, what function has your wife or husband played with regard to your apply and mutual family members obligations and conversely, what effect has possessing your company experienced on your marriage and position as a mom?

Seth has been my quantity 1 supporter.  We break up relatives obligations with cooking, caring for youngsters, and jogging the household.  We outsource a whole lot mainly because he works entire time also.  But, we are both of those equals in the house.  There is no “man’s” do the job or “woman’s” work.  Nicely, other than it’s possible killing bugs.  That is his job.

I have blocked off relatives time just about each and every night and most weekends.  My telephone gets set absent and no work is performed unless of course it is a deemed workday, which is only about at the time a month.  Amount and high quality family members time is essential to each of us.  We waited a extensive time to have youngsters and went as a result of a extremely large amount.  We want to appreciate them whilst they are even now prepared to dangle out with us.

What are the professionals and cons of law agency possession as a mother with regard to attaining do the job-daily life equilibrium? 

Execs: make my individual schedule, excellent part design for my children, offered to attend college gatherings if ample recognize is specified

Downsides:  Not in a position to just choose time or a day off when child is ill or wants something at school from time to time have to perform evenings or weekends sometimes are not able to show up at faculty gatherings when progress see is not provided

What are the pros and drawbacks of legislation company possession from a qualified standpoint?

Execs:  decide on my customers decide how to handle instances get to do points my way deal with my own calendar

Cons:  fear about the place the subsequent client is coming from not obtaining a continual paycheck no trip or ill go away

In your feeling, has the pandemic modified your colleagues’ attitudes in direction of dad and mom – specifically mothers – in the workforce? 

Not really.  The only thing that comes to brain is it’s possible that we can tackle even additional, ie functioning from household with young children attending digital school subsequent to us.

You should share a parenting mishap or embarrassing child second that another mother or father who methods can relate to.

When I was in digital court one particular day, my then 3-12 months-previous pretty much climbed on my head.  Luckily it was just a status hearing and absolutely everyone just said hello to her.

You should share a tale about an opponent or colleague who grossly underestimated you (no matter if because of to youth, minimal practical experience or just getting a lady or father or mother) or an wonderful victory that you achieved

At an IEP assembly I experienced a male principal try out to discuss down to me and say that I did not comprehend operating a faculty.  He was literally standing over me in an authoritative way.  I remained seated and calmly defined all my levels and practical experience.  His attract dropped and he stated, “So, mainly, you can do my work and your career.”  I reported, “Yep!”  He sat down and the conference continued.  I received the university student almost everything my shopper wanted.

In your check out, what function does regulation organization possession by mom attorneys perform in advancing gender equality in the legal profession? 

It proves to us that we can have it all.  Adult males are still likely to be the similar and some will treat us unequally.  But we will prevail.  I in fact adore when somebody underestimates me or asks me who I function for in a condescending way.  It is entertaining placing them back in their position in a sweet manner.   I also like the aid and really like we have for every single other just simply because we are fellow mom’s, lawyers and legislation company entrepreneurs. 

Let’s pay out it forward – share your finest suggestions or most strong lesson discovered with other female mom attorneys who may perhaps be pondering about beginning a agency or have begun a company but are going by means of a rough patch. 

A person day at a time.  Do not be scared to inquire for help.  Achieve out to fellow mom, lawyer, regulation agency entrepreneurs and get advice.  You can have it all just just take the very first phase and don’t glance back!! 


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