1998 to Present
Since 1998 when Lawlady.com launched on the internet, attorney Stefani Quane has been pioneering innovative, non-court solutions for divorcing couples. She trained with the national founders of the Collaborative Law model, Pauline Tesler and Stu Webb in 1999 to 2001. She was the first practicing collaborative divorce professional in Washington and introduced Collaborative Divorce to the first wave of Washington attorneys and allied professionals she trained. She is the grandmother to the King County Collaborative Law group having founded the first Washington collaborative law group that later morphed into King County Collaborative Law.
Ms. Quane integrates legal principles of restorative justice to aid conflicted clients move past marital grudges and hurts. She's trained in the Concious Uncoupling Model developed by Katherine Woodward Thomas and coaches her divorce clients in this model to help them move through the angst of divorce. She's also studied the work of the High Conflict Institute and attorney and therapist Bill Eddy, a leader in managing high conflict divorce cases. "Much of my style working with high conflict couples comes from my study of the work of Bill Eddy. I find his practices guidelines reduce the stress of divorce and stop repeating triggers that inflame conflict." "I also admire the work of Stan Tatkin on the neurobiology of love and make sure that my client's understand the brain chemistry changes that happen during the beginning and ending processes of a relationship when our attachment and pleasure centers of the brain are activated." She also trained in systemic constellation facilitiation which addresses multi-generational patterns which can play out in divorce.
Ms. Quane strives to assist clients find organic, sensible solutions that match the couple's needs. She does not see every divorce as needing the same legal process. She customizes her approach to each case. No divorce is the same. "However, most couples do benefit from mediation in my opinion," says Attorney Quane. Couples typically report a sense of relief at having reached finality on court issues at the end of mediation. Mediation is an excellent model of resolution because the parties have a say in the outcome of their litigation and fighting. I have mediated at least 200 divorces to date.
Ms. Quane added prenuptial agreement services in 2004. "I got tired of seeing good marriages end up in hotly-contested divorces, and wanted to counsel people before they walked down the aisle and provide contracts to reduce later unnecessary divorce fighting. I take my knowledge of divorce and apply it to helping people craft beneficial prenuptial agreements aimed at clarifying expectations and protecting pre-marital assets." It is her mission before she retires to assist 1,000 clients with the prenup process.
I was searching for my 'calling.' I attended career workshops and read books to explore different lines of work. Divorce and prenuptial agreement legal work kept finding me. I did not imagine growing up to be a prenup and divorce attorney. But I have always been interested in love, relationships, healing and sacred ceremonies. My parents had a painful, dysfunctional divorce. I realized I could help divorcing clients bring beauty, grace, kindness, peace, and practicalness into the divorce process. I now work to help other families have a better divorce than my parents had.
Stefani Quane serves on the "Integrative Law" formation committee for the American Bar Association. The ABA is exploring creating a section for emerging areas of the law. Her holistic approach is recognized and written about in the ABA book by author and attorney J. Kim Wright called Lawyers as Peacemakers. Lawyers are innovating legal practices that cut hostility, legal costs and address the human dynamics at play in legal issues. It was an honor to be invited to this ABA committee.
Ms. Quane graduated from college with a BA in Economics with honors at University of Washington in 1986. She was a Delta Gamma sorority member. She earned the Idaho Veteren's Scholarship for 3 years. During college she clerked with the King County Public Defender's office.
Ms. Quane's law degree is from University of Wisconsin- Madison, 1989. She was on the Dean's list many semesters and graduated in the top third of her class. She was approached personally to join moot court and trained specifically in litigation and legal writing during law school. She interned for the Wisconsin Court of Appeals during law school and at the Seattle firm Stafford, Frey.
After law school she worked as an insurance defense litigation attorney for Drew, Eckl and Farnham in Atlanta, and later Schwabe, Williamson, then Hackett, Beecher and Hart, and Forsberg and Umlauf in Seattle. These fine firms provided excellent mentorship about being a responsible attorney. Ms. Quane left insurance defense litigation to create LAWLADY.com in 1998. When creating a family law practice, she understood very well how the litigation model can be harmful to families.
Stefani Quane's first work at any law firm was at Quane Law of Idaho during high school. She was in charge of supervising the attorneys' monthly reports to the insurance adjusters. This was the law firm her father founded and worked at from 1973 to his death in 2018. Ms. Quane chose to follow in her father's career footsteps, but deep down she is very much a teacher like her mother Judith Allan.
"I have been through the devastating process of ending a significant relationship. Heart break is a real phenomina I promise you. This is how I can have so much tenderness and compassion for my divorcing clients. I've also had bad outcomes from relationships that started so hopeful and positive. That's another reason why I want to share with clients the wisdom I've learned on my personal path to love during their prenuptial drafting phase. I find love the most interesting of subjects."
Ms. Quane has taught lectures and Continuing Legal Education classes on a variety of legal topics for the International Alliance of Collaborative Practitioners, Washington State Bar Association, King County Bar Association, King County Family Law Section Meeting, University of Washington School of Law, Seattle University Law School, Discover U, annual ADR Conference, Pierce County Bar Association and Washington Cannabis Institute. Here lecture topics included collaborative law, holistic law, small firm marketing, language for conflict resolution, cannabis law, prenuptial agreements, stress management for lawyers, legal writing, small claims court, divorce topics, and Washington cannabis law.
Starting in 2010, Stefani Quane has been a cannabis legalization activist. She has spoken to Olympia and Idaho Hempfest and Lobbied in Wisconsin and Washington State for more fair and just cannabis laws. She represents the Cannabis Freedom March and formerly represented a client challenging CPS as pro-bono clients. No person deserves severe jail time for choosing a helpful plant over alcohol, cigarettes or pharmaceutical drugs. She served as an officer for the Coalition for Cannabis Standards and Ethics.
In 2014, Ms. Quane began activism work to bring attention to the harms of male circumcision. She now volunteers for Bloodstained Men, Intact America and Doctors Against Circumcision. She has been asked to write an upcoming article on the legal ethics of circumcision for the State Bar Magazine.
Daniel Pink uses Stefani Quane's legal approach as an example of symphony thinking in his New York Times best seller Whole New Mind: How Right Brainers Will Rule the Future. Symphony thinkers see the whole that the parts make up. It's another word for holistic thinking.
J. Kim Wright in her American Bar Association book Lawyers as Peacemakers: Practicing Holistic, Problem-Solving Law features a chapter on Ms. Quane's use of ceremony and ritual to address the spiritual and psychological components during divorce.
Ms. Quane's work has been written about in Seattle Metropolitan, Seattle's Child and Verve Magazines.
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