Recognizing the need for an amicable, less costly alternative to resolving divorce issues than through the courts, Leesburg divorce attorney-mediator Donald Caruthers focuses his practice on divorce mediation with associated financial planning.
In addition to more than 15 years of experience as a divorce mediator and 40 years of practicing law, Mr. Caruthers is a Certified Financial Planner™ with an advanced law degree in taxation. He brings a broad base of legal knowledge and financial acumen to the mediation table.
Don Caruthers is a native of North Carolina, and has practiced law for 43 years.
Education: Mr. Caruthers has two law degrees. He graduated from the University of Virginia School of Law in 1965, and received his Master of Laws in Taxation from George Washington University Law School in 1976, with highest honors. Portions of his Masters' Thesis were nationally published in two issues of the Journal of Real Estate Taxation. He was an instructor in real estate investments at the University of Virginia, 1978-79. In 2002 he received a Certificate in Financial Planning from Florida State University, and is a Certified Financial Planner TM .
Bar Memberships. Mr. Caruthers was admitted to practice law in Virginia in 1965, in the District of Columbia in 1966, and in Maryland in 1984. He is currently a member of the Virginia, Maryland and District of Columbia Bars.
Practice History. In his early years of practice he was a prosecuting attorney in Arlington, acquiring extensive courtroom experience. He practiced law in Arlington until 1974, in Fairfax from 1974-1987, and in Loudoun since 1987.
Divorce Mediation. Over the years he became dissatisfied with the way the adversary legal process often treated divorcing couples, and in 1992 he decided to explore the relatively new field of divorce mediation as an alternative. After completing the training at Northern Virginia Mediation Service, he became impressed with the superiority of this method, and began to emphasize it in his practice. In 2000 the decision was made to limit the practice to divorce mediation. He is certified as a family law mediator by the Virginia Supreme Court.
Financial Planning. Many of the problems faced by divorcing couples are financial rather than legal. Most lawyers are unequipped to provide financial planning assistance. To fill this need, Mr. Caruthers starting taking the necessary courses in 2000, and became a Certified Financial Planner TM in 2003. He now incorporates financial analysis and planning into divorce mediation, and uses the latest sophisticated software in this process.
Tax analysis is also an area that is emphasized in the process. Mr. Caruthers' second law degree in taxation, and the tax courses necessary to qualify for the Certified Financial Planning examination, enable him to assist clients in avoiding the many tax pitfalls in the divorce process.
Martindale-Hubbell Rating. Martindale-Hubbell is a service which rates attorneys nationwide for legal skill and ethical standards. Mr. Caruthers has the highest rating for legal ability and ethical standards that an attorney can achieve.
Other Professional Memberships. Mr. Caruthers is a member of the Financial Planning Association and the Virginia Mediation Network.
Personal: Mr. Caruthers lives with his wife, Terry, in northern Loudoun County. He has two children and six grandchildren.
Areas of Practice
- Divorce Mediation
- Financial Planning
- Tax Analysis
- Virginia, 1965
- District of Columbia, 1966
- Maryland, 1984
- George Washington University National Law Center, Washington, District of Columbia
- LL.M. - 1976
- Honors: summa cum laude
- Honors: With Highest Honors
- Major: Taxation
- University of Virginia School of Law, Charlottesville, Virginia
- Juris Doctor - 1965
- College of Wooster, Wooster, Ohio
- B.A. - 1962
- University of Virginia School of Law
- "Portions of his Masters", Journal of Real Estate Taxation
- Instructor, Real Estate Investments, University of Virginia, 1978 to 1979
Honors and Awards
- AV Peer Review Rated through Martindale-Hubbell
Professional Associations and Memberships
- Virginia Bar Association, Past Member
- Maryland Bar Association, Member
- District of Columbia Bar Association, Member
- Financial Planning Association, Member
- Virginia Mediation Network, Member
Past Employment Positions
- Arlington County, Special Prosecutor, 00/1979 to 00/1980
- Arlington County, Assistant Commonwealth Attorney, 00/1968 to 00/1971
- Delta Theta Phi