Putting People First
By utilizing her extensive experience in family law, attorney Randi J. Vladimer helps clients put their lives back together and move forward
by Leigh Stuart

The family unit, most will agree, is central to one’s life and overall well-being; yet, as strong as a family can be, this fortitude cannot always prevent things from changing. Should an issue such as divorce, custody or child support arise, it is of the utmost importance to find caring and competent legal assistance to help navigate these complex and life-altering processes. Luckily for clients throughout Pennsylvania, there is attorney Randi J. Vladimer, who specializes in all manner of cases in the field of family law.

Vladimer, a member of both the American Bar Association and the Chester County Bar Association, has been a practicing attorney for nearly 30 years. She holds an undergraduate degree from Hobart and William Smith Colleges in Geneva, N.Y., and she graduated first in her class from New England School of Law in Boston. She also spent a year in Washington, D.C., working for the public defender’s office. She went on to earn admittance to the Pennsylvania Bar Association before also adding credentials from the U.S. District Court Eastern District of Pennsylvania, U.S. Court of Appeals 3rd Circuit and U.S. Court of Federal Claims to her considerable list of qualifications.

Vladimer has worked for the Philadelphia District Attorney’s office, as well as a top local firm, but has been running her own successful family practice since 1991. Specializing in matters such as divorce, child custody, support, Protection from Abuse orders (PFAs) and guardianship, Vladimer’s firm has recently expanded to include arbitration and mediation services.

Arbitration and mediation are both means of working to settle disputes outside of the traditional courts system. As an arbitrator, Vladimer will serve as an impartial third party acting as a judge between the parties. As a mediator, Vladimer also serves as an unbiased, neutral party; but, rather than serving as a judge, her role is to help clients—each of whom will often each have his or her own attorney—reach solutions based on compromise. Whereas arbitration is a binding process similar to but far simpler than a trial, mediation is a negotiation process.

There are inherent benefits to both means of alternative resolution. Both involve a neutral attorney, as well as attorneys representing each client. With arbitration, Vladimer explains, the arbiter is selected as an experienced, knowledgeable and capable person who is trusted by the attorneys representing the involved clients.

Arbitration can be beneficial because resolutions can be reached much faster than traditional court cases, wherein parties can sometimes wait as long as 18 to 24 months just to set a trial date. Mediation, too, has a unique set of benefits when compared to the usual processes.

“Mediation, as long as you have full and fair disclosure, is less costly, and you control your own destiny,” she says. “At the same time, it takes a lot of trust and the cooperation of both parties. It is definitely not for everyone.”

When possible, however, Vladimer says mediation is very helpful in custody cases. Clients who are self-employed, own businesses, possess stock options or have complicated financial situations, however, may not be ideal candidates for mediation. Vladimer recently brought a new attorney into her practice, one who is specially certified as a mediator.

Expanding her firm’s offerings with respect to family law has not diminished her focus on tackling tough cases for which she has become well known. Vladimer remains a go-to legal professional for matters such as custody and child support, as well as the division of marital assets, spousal support and alimony. She knows matters of family law are often rife with emotion, and she has a great deal of experience helping clients through difficult times.

“Whether someone has been married for one year or 30 years, [divorces] are still just as intense,” she says. “I tell clients, whether they’re going through a divorce or custody or support [issues], that it’s like climbing a ladder. Some days you’ll go up two rungs, some days you’ll go down five, but you will eventually get to the top.”

Of attributes that set her firm apart from others, Vladimer notes that a genuine concern for her clients is at the top of the list. “We really do like our clients,” she says. “We do have that kind of relationship where we want to know, in 10 years, how they’re doing.”

To that end, Vladimer says she regularly receives visits and correspondence from former clients whose lives she helped change for the better. One recent visit came from a client who she helped through a divorce that began in 2004. Vladimer listened as the client, who stopped by the office, spoke about her children, now grown, and how she remarried after the divorce and moved on with her life. “She is now very successful, she has two kids in college, and she is very happy,” Vladimer says.

Outside of the world of law, Vladimer is an avid animal activist. The organization Give a Dog a Bone (www.giveadogabone.us), which she founded “on a whim” in 2009 with the initial goal of collecting pet items for a holiday donation, has grown into a thriving entity. Now in its fifth year, Give a Dog a Bone hosts annual events, such as the Fall Fiesta, and has grown in its mission to gather and distribute items including blankets, toys, food and, of course, bones to rescue and shelter dogs along the East Coast, from Maine to Florida. Vladimer also has two horses, one of which shows competitively and another that will turn a year old in February. She also has four Welsh Corgis (three of which are rescues), which can be seen at her law office regularly.

Vladimer, who is dedicated to giving back in all areas of her life, sums up her efforts succinctly, saying, “Helping others is just what I do.”

Randi J. Vladimer, P.C.
320 King of Prussia Road, Suite 140
Radnor, PA 19087