Stephen B. Ruben

Attorney Profile

Top Rated Family Law Attorney in San Francisco, CA

Ruben Law Firm
 | 1 Market Street, Spear Tower 36th Floor
San Francisco, CA 94105
Phone: 415-399-6830
Fax: 415-391-0140
Selected To Super Lawyers: 2005, 2014 - 2021
Licensed Since: 1992
Practice Areas:
  • Family Law (90%),
  • Estate Planning & Probate (10%)
    Attorney Profile

    Stephen B. Ruben is a State Bar Certified Specialist in Family Law and has been continuously recognized since 2007 as a “Northern California Super Lawyer” for his work in the field of Family Law. Stephen has also been recognized nationally and internationally as a Family Law Lawyer of Distinction for his impressive record of achieving results for his clients in court (both trial and appeals) in mediation or judicial settlement conferences.

    In 2010, Stephen was appointed by Chief Justice Ronald George to serve as a member of the Elkins Family Law Task force of the Judicial Council of California and took part as member of a team of distinguished lawyers, judges and mental health professionals resulting in significant reforms to address the Family Law Courts State- wide.  The goal of the Task Force was to provide access and justice for all family law litigants and Stephen contributed significantly to the report and recommendations adopted by the Supreme Court.   For more than 20 years as part of his commitment to the legal community of San Francisco, Stephen continues to serve as Judge Pro Tem and Senior Settlement Master the San Francisco Unified Court. As a Senior Settlement master, he has an outstanding track record of settling highly contested family law matters. Because of his commitment to resolving disputes without trial, Stephen has expanded his practice to include alternative dispute resolution services including arbitration, early neutral case assessment, mediation and private judging.

    Stephen has extensive experience in all phases of divorce and parental rights, including asset discovery, property division, spousal support, child custody and child support, as well as premarital agreements, post nuptial agreements, post judgment modifications and enforcement. A noteworthy portion of his specialty is in international child custody cases including his significant and successful litigation practice under the Hague Convention.  He has prevailed in landmark victories successfully returning children who have been wrongfully abducted governed by the Hague Convention. These international custody disputes often span many different countries and continents including Denmark, England, Germany, Japan and Israel.  Stephen specializes is in complex, high asset cases.  He has vigorously litigated cases and has a widespread reputation of excellence, exceptional high ethical practices, creativity, leadership and results. He is a frequent lecturer on continuing education programs for the State Bar and American Association of Family Conciliation Courts. His firm, the Ruben Law Firm is located in San Francisco.

    Practice Areas
    • 90%Family Law
    • 10%Estate Planning & Probate


    Selected to Super Lawyers for 9 yearsbottom-image

    Super Lawyers: 2005, 2014 - 2021

    Certificates and Credentials

    California Board of Legal Specialization

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    About Stephen Ruben

    Admitted: 1992, California

    Professional Webpage:


    • The Lawyers Club of San Francisco

    Special Licenses/Certifications:

    • Certified Family Law Specialist, State Board of Legal Specialization, State Bar of California

    Bar/Professional Activity:

    • Member, Bar Association of San Francisco
    • Member, Family Law Section, Bar Association of San Francisco
    • Illinois, 1973
    • U.S. District Court Northern District of California
    • Member, Association of Certified Family Law Specialists
    • Chair, Delegation for the Conference of Delegates
    • Judge Pro Tem, Unified Family Court of San Francisco
    • U.S. District Court Eastern District of California
    • U.S. Supreme Court, 1981
    • Member, Board of Governors, Delegation for the Conference of Delegates
    • Member, State Bar of Illinois, 1973
    • California, 1992
    • U.S. District Court Southern District of California
    • Executive Committee (FLEXCOM), Family Law Section, State Bar of California, 2007 - 2009

    Pro bono/Community Service:

    • Past President, Lawyers Club of San Francisco
    • Family Law Mediator's Panel, Bar Association of San Francisco
    • Member of a San Francisco jazz ensemble known as "Lush Lounge."
    • Member, Board of the Stern Grove Musical Festival
    • Member and Active Vocalist in the Kol-Emanu-el Choir of Temple Emanu-el of San Francisco
    • Liaison to the State Bar Family Law Section
    • Member, Rotary Club of San Francisco
    • Chief Arbitrator, Hearing Attorney/Client Fee Disputes in Family Law for BASF
    • Member of the Editorial Board of Lexis/Nexis California Family Law Monthly Journal

    Scholarly Lectures/Writings:

    • "Manimony," a term he coined to describe spousal support for men
    • Parental alienation and its short and long term impact on parents who seek frequent and continuous contacts with their children
    • Set asides for marital settlement agreements
    • The impact of death and estate planning instruments and pre and post marital agreements in effect during a pending dissolution proceeding
    • Recommendations of the Elkins Family Law Task Force
    • California Family Law News, Family Law Section of the State Bar of California
    • Lecturer, Law Attorneys and is Devoted to Complex Family Law Litigation
    • “Adult Children of Parental Alienation Syndrome", Family Law Section of the State Bar of California, California Family Law News published 2009


    • Successfully represented and prevailed in a case for the return of a child to the habitual residence, Denmark, in a Hague abduction proceeding., 2019

    Other Outstanding Achievements:

    • Better Business Bureau A+ rating, 2019
    • American Institute of Family Law Attonreys, 10 Best Attorney - Client Satisfaction, 2019
    • Lawyers of Distinction Award, 2019

    Educational Background:

    • Illinois Institute of Technology Chicago-Kent College of Law, Chicago, Illinois, United States of America, J.D., With Honors, 1973
    • Bethany College, with honors

    Industry Groups

    • Child Support
    • Complex High Asset and Net Worth
    • Dissolution Of Marriage
    • International Custody Disputes
    • Spousal Support
    • Wrongful Retention and Child Abduction
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    Office Location for Stephen B. Ruben

    1 Market Street
    Spear Tower 36th Floor
    San Francisco, CA 94105

    Phone: 415-399-6830

    Fax: 415-391-0140

    Stephen B. Ruben:

    Last Updated: 4/15/2021

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