SUSAN J. SHULENBERGER

206.838.9118   |   sshulenberger@sociuslaw.com

I come up with solutions that minimize conflict and are the best for my clients and their families holistically for the long haul.

Susan helps people navigate through divorce matters involving significant assets or complex financial issues. With close to 40 years of experience as a lawyer, she has dedicated the last two decades to working in family law.

Susan looks for ways to avoid unnecessary conflict in divorce and family law matters and helps clients focus on their long-term well-being. She understands the stresses that come with these emotionally charged situations. Susan sees the big picture and narrows the issues.

 

She is viewed by her clients and peers not only as an astute and knowledgeable attorney, but also compassionate and transparent. Susan works with her clients as a team, discusses their end goals and engages them in analyzing their options and potential ways forward. A stepparent herself, she provides guidance on how to minimize impacts on children to maintain healthier relationships down the road. She also has a network of resources, including parenting mediators and counselors, to support clients and their families.

 

Her clients include high net worth individuals on cases involving substantial assets such as real estate, stock options, professional practices, ownership interests in varying legal entities, and ongoing management of closely held businesses that often raise complex valuation and distribution issues.

 

Susan brings a sophisticated skillset. Her legal career began with a solid foundation in business law and commercial litigation at leading global law firms in Seattle. She is also trained in mediation and experienced in collaborative law, which she emphasizes is a better option than costly litigation and trial. With a background in litigation, she has seen how situations can quickly escalate and is why she uses a more cooperative approach whenever possible. If the need arises, Susan and her team are prepared to tackle the litigation.

SEMINARS AND PUBLICATIONS

  • Contributing Author and Editor, “Use of Professionals in Family Law Litigation,” Washington Family Law Desk Book 3rd edition (scheduled to be published 2021), as well as the 2012 Cumulative Supplement, (December 2011)

  • Contributing Author and Editor, Washington Practice, Family and Community Property Law, Supplement (2016)

  • Presenter, “Divorce Litigation, Start to Finish”, at the National Business Institute CLE (Seattle, 2011)

  • Presenter, “Dissolution Procedure Updates” at National Business Institute CLE, Current Events for Family Lawyers: Legislative and Case Law Update (June 2010)

  • Presenter, “Conflicts of Interests” and “Moral Turpitude and Offensive Personalities” at Washington State Bar Association CLE, Family Law Ethics: Avoiding the Web of Ethical Pitfalls (September 2009)

EDUCATION

J.D., cum laude, Seattle University 

 

B.A., University of Washington

RECOGNITION

Super Lawyers® list, 2015-2021

 

AV Preeminent® rating, Martindale-Hubbell® Law Dictionary

 

Avvo “Superb” rating

COMMUNITY

International Academy of Collaborative Law Professionals, Member-Membership & Outreach Committee and Standards and Ethics Committee

 

WSBA, Practice Monitor

 

WSBA Adjunct Disciplinary Counsel

 

King County Collaborative Law, Member of Standards Committee

 

King County Bar Association, Chair of Collaborative Section

 

Previously served on the WSBA Professionalism Committee, the Character and Fitness Board, Lawyers Trust for Client Security Board, the Rules of Professional Conduct Committee. Also served on the Gender Equality in Law Committee, and the Judicial Recommendation Committee of the KCBA.

MEMBERSHIPS

 

Washington State Bar Association

 

King County Collaborative Law

 

King County Bar Association

OUTSIDE THE OFFICE

Susan is a Seattle native. She and her husband, Doug, live in Burien, where they were both raised. Despite living with two dogs and two cats, Susan and Doug have the freedom to travel and pursue their numerous athletic interests. Susan has competed in numerous triathlons and half marathons and has attended yoga retreats in Greece and in northern Canada. They welcomed their first grandchild in February 2018 and their second in December 2020.