Nicole Heiden Sodoma, of Myers Park, began Sodoma Law in 2008 where she and 9 other lawyers practice Bankruptcy, Estate Planning, and Family Law, to include issues related to separation, divorce, child support, child custody, alimony, equitable distribution, pre-nuptial and post-nuptial agreements, domestic violence, and more. In 2010, she informally opened another practice area, A.R.T. at Sodoma Law, which includes issues related to Assisted Reproductive Technology, such as donor and surrogate agreements and parenting plans for non-traditional and traditional families. Nicole will be writing several blogs on MomsCharlotte! Keep reading to find out more about Sodoma Law and what Nicole will be discussing!
Q. What made you decide to become a lawyer?
A. We regularly receive resumes from new (and not so new) lawyers from all over the country. Some of the new lawyers often mention that they decided to become a lawyer because they like to argue. Regarding family law, often we hear that the candidate became a lawyer because they watched their parents divorce or they knew someone who had been divorced. Everyone has their own reason for choosing the profession. For me, it was a course in college that drew me in. It was the course I talked about most and the course that pulled me from the rest of my studies. Once I graduated, after finding my first real job, my mother reminded me of that passion. I applied, got accepted and moved before I even had a chance to tell anyone. I envisioned myself being a contract lawyer working for CNN or ESPN. But, once I found family law, I knew that was it for me. No two families were going to be alike and I knew that it was an area in which I could make a real impact.
Q. Do type of law do you specialize in?
A. My area of concentration is family law.
Q. What drew you to that?
A. Family Law is one of the most challenging areas of the law. Not only do you need to know about business, real estate and financial issues, but you also need to understand each statute related to divorce, custody, and the like, and the ever-changing caselaw that interprets those statutes. I get the opportunity to help parents adjust to stressful circumstances and sometimes become better parents. I am able to help families consider the next chapters of their lives. In my practice, Ive learned that change, whether or not it is your choice, is often inevitable. How you handle that change is critical for you and your children.
Q. When did you start writing about divorce and parenting?
A. Being able to write and think critically is a large part of my practice, so Ive been writing about these issues for some time. As to writing for publications such as the Charlotte Observers MomsCharlotte blog, I have found that many people who are going through separation receive most of their information and education from friends and television. Some of the basic concepts are skewed and by the time our consultation begins, my clients are already overwhelmed. Sharing tips in a public forum strikes me as a great way to help.
Q. Are you divorced?
A. While I am not divorced (I have been married for 7 years), divorce was a big part of my life growing up. Both of my parents had been divorced before they met, then, they divorced each other when I was ten years old. I was a part of the proceedings, a part of their split, and the only child of their marriage (although I have five half- brothers). For ten years, we were the quintessential blended family. Thereafter, it was more akin to a tame version of the War of the Roses but it was my normal. Fortunately, the experience continues to allow me to learn so much about what works and what doesnt work. My parents are incredibly supportive and I am grateful to them for many reasons.
Q. What is your #1 tip for co-parenting?
A. Not everyone is going to be capable of co-parenting; one parent cannot force the other to participate in childrens lives in a certain manner or at a particular level. It may be that co-parenting for one person is parallel parenting for another. Consider parenting in the same direction but not in the exact same way. Stay in your own lane so long as you are effectively communicating and keeping the children front and center of every decision.
Q. What will your new series be about on MomsCharlotte?
A. The goal of my series for MomsCharlotte is to help guide parents through the initial stages of separation, by providing answers to the questions we hear most frequently from our clients when they first consult with us. I see this series as an opportunity to put rumors to rest and to give parents a head start on the right questions to ask an attorney when considering this next chapter of their familys lives.
Q. If our readers have questions, where can they reach you?
A. Our firm email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. Please put MomsCharlotte in the subject line.