Debra S. Frank

Attorney Profile

Top Rated Family Law Attorney in Los Angeles, CA

Debra S. Frank, APLC
 | 1875 Century Park East, Suite 700, Los Angeles, CA 90067
Phone: 424-552-3641
Fax: 310-277-5932
Selected To Super Lawyers: 2009 - 2020
Licensed Since: 1977
Practice Areas:
  • Family Law
    Attorney Profile

    Certified as a specialist in family law by the Board of Legal Specialization of The State Bar of California, Debra Frank focuses her practice exclusively on that area of the law. The owner of Debra S. Frank, APLC, she assists clients throughout West Los Angeles and Beverly Hills from the firm's office in Century City. Admitted to practice before all California state courts, Ms. Frank is also admitted to practice in the District of Columbia.

    A significant portion of Ms. Frank's practice involves assisting clients whose marriages are coming to an end and who are thus having to deal with child custody and visitation, property division, and spousal and child support. With a background in mediation and collaborative divorce, she often helps her clients reach an accord through the use of those alternative dispute resolution methods, but she is also a forceful courtroom advocate when litigation becomes necessary.

    In addition to her matrimonial practice, Ms. Frank has extensive experience in other family law matters, including prenuptial and postmarital agreement preparation and review, paternity disputes, the modification and enforcement of existing parenting and support orders, and the obtaining of protective orders for domestic violence victims. Her successful track record along with the ethical manner in which she handles what can often be emotional cases have earned her the respect of her colleagues, as demonstrated by her AV Preeminent* peer review rating through Martindale-Hubbell and her 10.0 "Superb" peer review rating through Avvo.

    Ms. Frank is frequently asked to deliver presentations on family law topics to bar associations and other groups, and she has had several articles published as well. A recipient of a Bachelor of Arts cum laude from Boston University and the holder of a Master of Arts in history from Carnegie Mellon University, she obtained her Juris Doctor in 1977 from Southwestern Law School.

    *AV®, AV Preeminent®, Martindale-Hubbell Distinguished and Martindale-Hubbell Notable are certification marks used under license in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies. Martindale-Hubbell® is the facilitator of a peer review rating process. Ratings reflect the anonymous opinions of members of the bar and the judiciary. Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Rating™ fall into two categories – legal ability and general ethical standards.

     
    Practice Areas
    • 100%Family Law
    Focus Areas

    Alimony & Spousal Support, Child Support, Custody & Visitation, Dissolution, Divorce, Domestic Violence, Paternity, Prenuptial Agreements, Marital Property, Mediation & Collaborative Law

    Selections

    Selected to Super Lawyers for 12 yearsbottom-image

    Super Lawyers: 2009 - 2020

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    About Debra Frank

    Admitted: 1977, California

    Professional Webpage: https://www.dsfranklawoffice.com/DebraFrank.html

    Honors/Awards:

    • Rated AV® Preeminent ™ by Martindale-Hubbell. AV® Preeminent ™ and BV® Distinguished™ are certification marks of Reed Elsevier Properties Inc., used in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies, 2011-present.
    • Commissioner and Vice-Chairperson of the California Law Revision Commission 1982-1983, appointed by Governor Jerry Brown.
    • Spirit of CEB Award, October 2012 for generous contributions to the Continuing Education of the Bar California and service to the profession.
    • Selected for inclusion in 2009 though 2020 Southern California Super Lawyers.
    • Public Member of the Department of Consumer Affairs, Bureau of Home Furnishings 1980-1981, appointed by Governor Jerry Brown.

    Special Licenses/Certifications:

    • The State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization, Certified Family Law Specialist 1993-present

    Bar/Professional Activity:

    • ACFLS Charitable Foundation, Inc.: Board Member 2019-present; Secretary 2020-present.
    • District of Columbia, 1980
    • State Bar Family Law Executive Committee, Member, 1995-1999
    • State Bar Family Law Advisory Commission, Board of Legal Specialization, Commissioner, 2005-2008
    • ProVisors, Member, 2006-Present
    • Los Angeles County Bar Association (LACBA), Family Law Reference Book Editor, 1998-2000, 2002, 2004-present, Family Law Alternate Dispute Resolution (ADR) Settlement Officer, 1986-2009, Family Law Daily Settlement Officer, 2010-present; Executive Committee, Chair 2010-2011, Chair Elect 2009-2010, Vice Chair 2009, Secretary 2008-2009, Treasurer 2007-2008, Member 1998-2004, 2005-2011.  Serving on the Executive Committee as a Past Chair 2011-present.
    • Century City Bar Association: President 2003, Chair Family Law Section 1997-mid 2013, Board of Governors 1998-2004, 2007-2012
    • Los Angeles County Bar Association Board of Trustees, Member, 2003-2004
    • State Bar of California, Family Law Executive Committee: Secretary-Treasurer 1996-1997, Member 1995-1999, Family Law News Editor 1998, Assistant Editor 1997.
    • State Bar of California, Family Law News, Contributing Editor 2008-2017.
    • Beverly Hills Bar Association: Family Law Executive Committee, 2009-present, Board of Governors, 2009-2013, Chair, Family Law Section, 2011-2012; Member, Southern California Business Litigation Inn of Court, 2007-2012. 
    • Los Angeles County Bar Association Family Law Section: ADR Subcommittee, Chair 2011-2012, member 2012- 6/2016
    • State Bar of California, Family Law Executive Committee Financial Issues South Subcommittee: Chair 1999-2008, Vice Chair 2009-2011
    • Southern California Family Law American Inn of Court - Founding Member and Vice President, 2007-2012; President 2012-2013; President 2017-2018; Executive Committee member 2016-2017, 2018-2020.
    • Association of Certified Family Law Specialists (ACFLS): Secretary 2011-2012, Secretary Elect 2010-2011, Newsletter Editor 2000-2001, 2008-2009, 2014-2016; Newsletter Associate Editor 6/13-12/13 and 2017-2018; Board Member 2000-2002, 2007-Present; 6/2013-present; Educational Librarian, 2019-Present; Coordinating Director, 2019-Present.
    • State Bar of California Family Law Advisory Commission, Board of Legal Specialization: Commissioner 2005-2008

    Pro bono/Community Service:

    • Rotary Club of Century City 1997-2009

    Scholarly Lectures/Writings:

    • On January 13, 2020, I moderated the Inn of Court's program, "Criminal Conviction Impacting Family Law Cases."  The Honorable Doreen Boxer, Comm., and the Honorable Michael R. Powell, Judge, two Los Angeles County Family Law Judicial Officers with a long history of prosecution and defense in Criminal Justice, discussed how family law issues of Spousal and Child Support, Child Custody, Division of Assets and Debts, Reimbursements, Attorneys Fees and Costs, are directly linked to Criminal Justice.  I authored the program materials - "Outline of Penal and Family Law Cases and Relevant Codes.", Moderator/Author, Criminal Conviction Impacting Family Law Cases, Southern California Family Law American Inn of Court, Criminal Law, Family Law, 2020
    • Author, Stock Options and Benefits Under Executive Business Plans, in CEB book Dividing Pensions and Other Employee Benefits in California Divorces, updated 2020, Author, Stock Options and Benefits Under Executive Business Plans
    • "What are my options if my fiance refuses to sign a prenuptial agreement?", Super Lawyers Supplement to Los Angeles Magazine, February, Page S-34, 2009
    • Marital Agreements, CEB book California Marital Settlement & Other Family Law Agreements, Third Edition, January 2020, Author, Marital Agreements, Family Law, 2020
    • Moderator, Los Angeles County Bar Association Family Law Section Program, “Hot Topics Every Family Law Attorney Should Know about Retirement Benefits,” March 2008
    • Author of chapter "Stock Options and Benefits Under Executive Business Plans" for CEB (Continuing Education of the Bar-California) book Dividing Pensions and Other Employee Benefits in California Divorces updated September 2018
    • Author of chapter "Marital Agreements" for CEB (Continuing Education of the Bar-California) book California Marital Settlement & Other Family Law Agreements, Third Edition, updated January 2018
    • Panelist, Beverly Hills Bar Association, Hot Tips Program, June 17, 2009
    • Author, "Are Mandatory Fee Arbitration Clauses Enforceable?", ACFLS Family Law Blog, May 28, 2009
    • Moderator, Beverly Hills Bar Association, “Navigating in the Twilight Zone of Estate Planning and Probate: Elusive Concepts in the Family Law Arena,” March 18, 2009
    • Author, “What are my options if my fiance refuses to sign a prenuptial agreement?” Super Lawyers Supplement to Los Angeles Magazine, February 2009, page S-34
    • Author, "Media and the Law," The Century City Lawyer 15:11, Winter 2008-2009
    • Moderator, Los Angeles County Bar Association Family Law Section Program Family, Law Trial Institute 101, “Exhibits and Use of Discovery at Trial,” February 2007
    • Moderator & Panelist, Los Angeles County Bar Association Family Law Symposium: Recent Developments Panel, 2007-2009
    • Author, "When Markets Collapse, So Do Families", Los Angeles Daily Journal, 2008
    • Author, "Preparing for a Media Onslaught", Los Angeles Lawyer, 2008
    • Author of article for chapter "Marital Agreements" for CEB (Continuing Education of the Bar - California) book, entitled California Marital Settlement & Other Family Law Agreements, Third Edition, updated as of 2018.
    • Author of chapter "Stock Options and Benefits under Executive Business Plans" for CEB (Continuing Education of the Bar- California) book, Dividing Pensions and other Employee Benefits in California Divorces; updated as of 2018
    • Co-Author, "How the Private Attorney Handles District Attorney Cases", Los Angeles County Bar Association Family Law Reference Book, 2003
    • Co-Author, "How the Private Attorney Handles District Attorney Cases", Los Angeles County Bar Association Family Law Reference Book, 1999
    • Co-Author, "How the Private Attorney Handles District Attorney Cases", Los Angeles County Bar Association Family Law Reference Book, 1994
    • Co-Author, "A Better Way to Pass Family Law Legislation", Family Law News and Review, 1994
    • Co-Author with Christine Gille, Esq. "The Dramatic Effect of Davis on “Living Separate and Apart”, Fall 2015, no. 4, ACFLS Family Law Specialist, Journal of the California Association of Certified Family Law Specialists Simply put, Davis stands for the proposition that if a couple remains in the same home, they cannot be “separate and apart.” If they are not physically living separate and apart, even if at least one of them has an intent to be permanently separated, the Family Code Section 771 starting line, which indicates when separate property may begin to accumulate, is not crossed. While there are some theoretical exceptions hinted at in Footnote 7 of the case, the Supreme Court did not opine on what those opportunities to litigate might be., Co-Author, The Dramatic Effect of Davis on “Living Separate and Apart”; How to Guide Clients Until Legislative Changes are Made, Journal of the California Association of Certified Family Law Specialists, Family Law, 2015

    Educational Background:

    • Graduate School: Carnegie-Mellon University, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, M.A., 1972
    • Undergraduate School: Boston University, Boston, Massachusetts, B.A., cum laude, Honors: With Honors, 1970
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    Office Location for Debra S. Frank

    1875 Century Park East, Suite 700
    Los Angeles, CA 90067

    Phone: 424-552-3641

    Fax: 310-277-5932

    Debra S. Frank:

    Last Updated: 4/15/2020

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