Choosing a female or male attorney as a matter of strategy….myth or fact?

by Law Offices of Marlo Van Oorschot, APLC.  Family law matters — divorce and child custody matters — are highly personal, and often bring high-conflict litigation. Clients strategically select the gender of their lawyer based upon several beliefs related to such conflict, which are more likely than not…myths.

Many men believe that, if they hire a female attorney, the judge will better accept a harsh position presented through the voice of a woman – in other words, that their position as male spouses is softened through the voice of a woman.   Often a woman believes that, by hiring a male attorney, the male lawyer will be better able to stand up to her husband and to give her strength she believes she otherwise does not possess.   These beliefs are stereotypes and do not take into account the reality of the law.  Therefore, they are myths.

A client is best served by honestly sharing the details of his or her marriage with his or her attorney.  Therefore, one of the most important criteria in hiring a family law attorney is whether or not a client is comfortable being open and honest about some of the deepest and darkest secrets a person holds.

Read the full story here.


Serving areas in Hendry County: Labelle, Clewiston, Pioneer, Flaghole, Montura, Hooker’s Point ; Serving areas in Glades County: Buckhead Ridge, Moore Haven, Lakeport, Palmdale, and Muse.  Serving areas in Lee County:  Alva, Buckingham, North Ft. Myers, Ft. Myers, South Ft. Myers, and Bonita Springs.

Contact me at 239-233-0222


The hiring of a lawyer is an important decision that should not be based solely upon advertisements. Before you decide, ask us to send you free written information about our qualifications and experience. Outcome or results are not guaranteed. The information presented on this website is for advertising purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. An attorney-client relationship will not be established until we have confirmed our representation of your case in writing.

4-H Advocacy Club – First meeting of the school year!


Don’t forget TODAY is the first meeting of the school year! 

Join the 4-H Advocacy Club today at the Pioneer Community Center at 4 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.   (4:30 p.m.  for Clewiston students arriving by bus).  If anyone needs a ride from Labelle today, please call me at 239-239-0222 and I will pick you up at the Labelle 4-H building at 3:30 (must have parent’s permission to ride with me).

Today’s we will have a brief introduction for new members, applaud our returning members, and kick the year off with opening statements.

While involved with the 4-H Advocacy Club, you will learn about our court system, advocacy, public speaking, as well as compete with other advocacy groups throughout Florida. Sharpen your professional and social skills and understand the importance of self-responsibility in the community, which will transfer to real life situations.

The 4-H Advocacy Club is recruiting juniors 8-10 years old, intermediate 11-13 years old, and seniors 14-18 years old for mock trial practice, witnesses, jury, and advocates.   Parents are also welcome to participate as jurors and witnesses.  Meetings are twice a month held on every other Wednesday at 4:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m., at the Pioneer Plantation Community Center. For more information contact Mary Cosmo by email at or cell 239-233-0222.

Brain-eating amoeba found in Glades County

Glades County—A confirmed case of Naegleria fowleri has been reported in Glades County. Naegleria fowleri (commonly referred to as the “brain-eating amoeba”), is a microscopic amoeba which is a single-celled living organism.

It can cause a rare and devastating infection of the brain called primary amebic meningoencephalitis (PAM).

The amoeba is commonly found in warm freshwater such as lakes, rivers, ponds and canals.

Infections can happen when contaminated water enters the body through the nose. Once the amoeba enters the nose, it travels to the brain where it causes PAM (which destroys brain tissue) and is usually fatal.

Read more at:Brain-eating amoeba found in Glades County.

4-H Advocacy Club–Cruella Deville is Guilty, Guilty, Guilty!


Picture from Left to right–Judge Sloan with Joseph Rourks as State Attorney; Samantha Bunting as Cruella Deville; Maggie Gacula as our Star Witness; Zeida C Rabelo as the Defense Counsel; Mary Cosmo 4-H Leader; and Mrs. Rabelo as the Jury Forman.

The 4-H Advocacy Club’s visit to the Hendry County Courthouse was a huge success.  The kids got a complete tour of the courtroom, the jury deliberation room, and even checked out the holding cells.

The kids participated in State v Deville mock trial, which the infamous Cruella Deville was charged with 1 count of puppy napping.  Joseph Rourks was an outstanding prosecutor, who hit a home run with his strong closing statement.  Zeida Rabelo as Defense Counsel put on a great defense for the defendant, the infamous Cruella Deville (played by Samantha Bunting).  In the end, the star witness (played by Maggie Gacula) testified with telling evidence, which resulted in a jury verdict of guilty.  Cruella Devilla was convicted and sentenced to 30 months of jail and 30 months of probation.  Mrs. Cruella Deville was then escorted out of the courtroom in handcuffs and shackles into the holding cell where she still awaits transport.

A special thank you to Judge Sloan, Court Bailiff Mrs. Barbara, and Assistant State Attorney Hamid Hunter for assisting with the 4-H Advocacy Club’s first mock trial.  YOU kids truly made the 4-H Advocacy Club a success!  I am so proud of all of you!   Thank you to all of your efforts.

FCSL Students assist poverty lawyers respresent poor americans


The Florida Coastal School of Law Public Interest Research Bureau (“Research Bureau”) is a student volunteer research service that provides free legal research to lawyers working for poverty law organizations in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, and South Carolina.

The Research Bureau’s mission is to aid lawyers representing the poor and thus help make equal access to justice available to indigent clients in underserved communities. The Research Bureau allows students to learn critical writing and research skills and use the law to do good. Students assist poverty lawyers with critical research that may help a family from losing their home, stop an abusive debt collector from harassing a family, obtain disability benefits for an impoverished person, prevent an entire family from being evicted, or obtain due process for a poor person at risk of losing a public benefit.

If you have any questions, please feel free to email Bray Natalzia, chief managing editor for FCSL’s Public Interest Research Bureau at  

4-H Advocacy Club – Next Meeting is Friday, December 14th at 4 p.m.


Join us on Friday, December 14, 2012, and learn about our court system, the legal process, advocacy, public speaking, as well as compete with other advocacy groups throughout Florida.  Our first informational meeting will be held on Friday, December 14, 2012, at 4:00 p.m. until 5 p.m. located at the Pioneer Plantation Community Center.

The 4-H Advocacy Club is for juniors 8-10, intermediate 11-13, and seniors 14-18.  For more information, please contact Mary Cosmo, Club Leader, at 239-233-0222 or by email at

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