June 10, 2023


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Jessica Markham, Bethesda, MD Family Law Attorney – My Shingle

5 min read


Welcome to MyShingle’s series celebrating Female-Owned and Mother-Owned Law Companies.  This profile features Jessica Markham, a relatives law attorney in Bethesda, Maryland. 

What is your name? 

Jessica Markham

Regulation Faculty attended and year of graduation.

College of Miami, 2005

Title, locale(s) and URL of Law Business.

Markham Law Business

Bethesda, Maryland


Summarize your perform expertise, if any, prior to opening your firm. Both equally as a law firm or prior to turning into a law firm.

I went straight by way of from school to regulation university to remaining an associate at a tiny relatives regulation organization in Bethesda.  I put in 10 many years there just before I resolved that I needed to be my individual manager, and I was prepared for the problem and journey of setting up my own business.

When did you get started your agency?


 Why did you determine to commence your individual legislation business?

I felt I necessary additional support in my instances, and felt that I desired to control who I experienced to help me, and I desired a lot more handle about procedures.  I needed to be equipped to be creative about enterprise, which include internet marketing.  I required to be in a position to mature professionally and creatively and as a company person, and couldn’t do that exactly where I was.

What was the reaction you obtained from spouse and children, good friends, colleagues, law university classmates, judges, etc…when you introduced your selection to launch?

Relatives was worried I would not have enough business enterprise.  Not my partner, he was not concerned.  Colleagues were all supportive of me.  Various individuals assumed I was performing it to have additional time with my young children, which was not a factor for me.

What practice regions does your organization focus on?

Household Legislation

What size is your company?

Commonly 8 lawyers, one extra beginning in September.  About 5 supporting employees.

Do you follow entire time or part time?

Whole time

What can make your law business exceptional and diverse from any other regulation company in the earth?

We emphasize work-life balance, diversity/equity, and inclusion, volunteering in the lawful and area group, we have a realistic billable need, and a staff-centered natural environment.

How quite a few little ones do you have and what ages are they?

2 kids, ages 5 and 8.

Has getting a mom affected your conclusion to get started or go on to work your possess regulation business? If so, how?

Sure, it has.  My youngsters assume that possessing a enterprise is a likely final result for them in the upcoming.  My daughter in particular is very proud of me.  I also feel after you individual your own organization, it is incredibly difficult to go back to functioning for someone else.

If you are married/residing in a dedicated relationship with a associate, what function has your spouse played with regard to your practice and mutual relatives obligations and conversely, what influence has possessing your agency experienced on your relationship and function as a mom?

I am married and my husband’s guidance has been integral in starting up my organization. He has aided wire the online, get the job done on the IT (which is his discipline, so that is very valuable).  Even if he wasn’t so hands on, his ethical support has been invaluable.  I assume owning the business has manufactured me extra fulfilled in my life which has a favourable affect on my relationship and job as a mother.

If you are a one guardian, have you faced any special worries in jogging your very own exercise and increasing a loved ones and if so, please explain what they are?


What are the pros and downsides of law business ownership as a mother with respect to attaining do the job-life balance?

The professional is that you have control around your time in that you’re the manager and can often use enable or delegate.  The downsides are that generally crap flows up to you, as you are backstopping the small business.  No a person will be much more invested than you in it.

What are the execs and cons of law company possession from a specialist standpoint?

Possessing your identify on the door implies legitimacy to prospective shoppers. And other legislation business entrepreneurs will refer to you out of regard for what you are accomplishing.

In your viewpoint, has the pandemic modified your colleagues’ attitudes to dad and mom – significantly mothers – in the workforce?

I imagine there is much more of an assumption that we are all operating and parenting at the exact same time.

Remember to share a parenting mishap or uncomfortable child minute that another mum or dad who procedures can relate to

I recall I once took my breast pump to a further firm for a mediation and experienced the milk cooler in their freezer. Someone assumed I had packed a lunch and I corrected him in front of the total lunchroom. It was funny more than everything.

Please share a story about an opponent or colleague who grossly underestimated you (regardless of whether owing to youth, restricted expertise or just being a girl or father or mother) or an brilliant victory that you attained

I imagine a lot of people underestimated my agency when it started off out because I started off it by myself, and they have been stunned to see the development from 1 to practically 9 attorneys in 7 many years.  I suppose this was thanks to my age of 34 when I begun out.

In your view, what purpose does regulation company possession by mom attorneys engage in in advancing gender equality in the legal occupation?

Women of all ages need to see other girls in positions of management and to model what they can do. Also, women I consider are likely to seek out out mentors and assistance from other gals.

Let us shell out it ahead – share your finest assistance or most powerful lesson figured out with other lady mother lawyers who could be wondering about setting up a organization or have commenced a company but are heading by a tough patch.

Find assistance from other girls who have completed it.  Pose your issues to them and see what they suggest.  Enterprises all practical experience the identical problems, from finding customers, retention of employees to administration.  Somebody has skilled this right before you, really don’t reinvent the wheel.


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