Credit Counseling Center – PRESS RELEASE

The Credit Counseling Center, a Bucks County non-profit organization, celebrated its 25th year of operations at the expansion of its office located within the First National Bank of Newtown, 832 Second Street Pike, Richboro, PA 18954 on May 7, 2019 with a ribbon cutting and reception hosted by Joan Reading, Executive Director, and its Board of Directors: Chair, Robert Szwajkos, Esq. (Curtin & Heefner LLP), Larry Grant (Aurum Consultants), Anne Berlin, Margaret Young (First National Bank & Trust Co. of Newtown), Thomas Maclin (Monument Bank), Ryan Fuller (GMG Insurance), Aret Kalayjian (Univest Bank), Lisa Folks (PNC Bank), Michael Sullivan (Fulton Bank), David Breidinger (Comcast), and James Barry. Attending the event were John Parry (Chairman) and Daniel J. Schaffer (President) – First National Bank & Trust Co. of Newtown; Mary Smithson, Clerk of Court of Common Pleas Bucks County; Christina M. Finello, Esq, Deputy Director of Housing & Human Services of Bucks County; and representatives of Penn Community Bank; U.S. Senator Pat Toomey (PA); U.S. Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick; Gene DiGirolamo, Meghan Schroeder, and Tommy Tomlinson of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives; Matt Weintraub, Bucks County District Attorney; Lower Bucks Chamber of Commerce; Habitat for Humanity; Bucks County Family Services; Bucks County Opportunity Council; Big Brothers Big Sisters; John Adelstein Esq.; Josh Goldblum, Esq.; and Patricia M. Mayer, Esq. Additional sponsors included QNB Bank, Covenant Bank, Fidelity Savings, Steamline Payroll, and William B. Parry & Son.

Sweet Stevens Attorneys Present Paul Stevens Memorial Legal Seminar at PAPSA Conference

New Britain, PA Attorneys from Sweet, Stevens, Katz & Williams recently presented the concluding session of the annual conference of the Pennsylvania Association of Pupil Service Administrators (PAPSA), a tradition that has become a high point of the gathering. The conference took place in April at the Inn at Leola Village in Leola, Pa.


In this full-day session, the “Paul Stevens Memorial Legal Seminar,” named for one of the founding partners of the law firm, attorneys Mark Cheramie Walz, Sharon W. Montanye, Thomas C.Warner, and Jane M. Williams shared information on recent court decisions that affect special education and pupil services legal issues.


Mark Cheramie Walz has extensive courtroom experience and specialized in the investigation and prosecution of child abuse and computer crimes cases. He helps districts to reduce liability while harnessing the benefits of new technology. Sharon Montanye is an advocate in special education litigation, with experience working in the field of education as an administrator, certified teacher, grant writer and peer reviewer. Tom Warner represents Pennsylvania school districts in matters of special education and provides in-service training in defensible special education programming and confidentiality/disclosure issues. One of the most experienced attorneys in special education, Jane Williams provides both proactive and defense representation to school entities. She has served as a hearing officer and advisor to school boards in student expulsion matters.


PAPSA is the only organization in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania specifically devoted to issues concerning pupil services programs in schools. Members of the organization have supervisory or administrative responsibility in fields such as counseling, health, psychology, home and school visitation, social work, special education, gifted education and student assistance. For more information, visit



Sweet, Stevens, Katz & Williams, LLP was formed in 1995 by nine experienced education lawyers who created the first private law practice in Pennsylvania dedicated entirely to Education Law. Since then, the firm has grown to 16 attorneys who represent over 290 school and municipal entities as Solicitors or as Special Counsel in more than 50 counties throughout Pennsylvania.

Pennsylvania sees a positive increase in kinship care placement over the last five years

HARRISBURG — Pennsylvania court data shows that over the last five years, the placement of children in kinship care has nearly doubled. The Office of Children and Families in the Courts (OCFC) tries their best to place children in the care of someone they know and have a relationship with (kinship care) before resorting to other placements – this could be a relative, coach, family friend, etc.  


The infographic below highlights key dependency court data including the average number of children entering the dependency system per year, demographics of the children and placement trends.

Notice to the Bar – Bucks County Rule on Parent Coordinators

The Bucks County Court has adopted Local Rule 1915.11-1.1. Parenting Coordination.  The Rule has been published in the PA Bulletin on May 11, 2019 and will therefore become effective on June 10, 2019.  Family Law attorneys are encouraged to familiarize themselves with the new rule.  Persons interested in being accepted onto Bucks County’s Roster of Parent Coordinators should submit their application in accordance with the local rule to Judge McMaster, the Administrative Judge of the Family Court Division.  Please note that applications cannot be submitted prior to June 10, 2019 and any submitted prior to that date will need to be resubmitted.

BCRCP 1915.11-1 PA Bulletin

Upcoming PHFA-Sponsored Mediation Training for those practicing in Philadelphia, Montgomery, and Bucks Counties!

Please join the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency (PHFA), the American Society of Housing Executives (ASCHE), the National Real Estate Institute (NREI) in a mission to build the capacity of Pennsylvania Residential Mortgage Diversion Courts.

If you are a housing counselor or an attorney who is currently practicing (or intend to practice) before the  Philadelphia, Montgomery, and Bucks County Residential Mortgage Diversion Court(s), you will want to attend this 2-day training!

There is no cost to you as PHFA is sponsoring the class. In addition, you can earn up to 15 CE’s for counselors; 15 CLE’s for attorneys (if you participate in all three classes). Continental breakfast and lunch will be served.


Urban Affairs Coalition

12ll Chestnut Street

2nd Floor

Philadelphia, PA 19107

June 10, 2019 and June 11, 2019 (8:00 am to 5:15 pm)

15 CE’s/CLE’s (all classes)

NREI 110 Legal Referrals and Limited Representation

This course is designed to instruct the participant on the limits and extent of the role of the counselor, attorney(s), conciliators, and others involved in the Philadelphia, Montgomery, and Bucks County Residential Mortgage Diversion Programs; how to identify and refer legal matters as they arise; and to explain the concept and effect of limited representation when used in foreclosure-related matters.

Date: June 10, 2019

Time: 8:00 AM – 12:15 PM

Cost: Free

CE: 4.0 hours (NIS national)

CLE: 4.0 hours PA (CLE credits)

NREI 111A Negotiation Strategies with the Consumer 

This is a 4-hour training session on “Negotiation Strategies with the Consumer” (providing comprehensive instruction on negotiating with the consumer in understanding current realities, compromise, and willingness to sacrifice in preparation for Servicer negotiation of loss mitigation options (in the context of court-imposed time lines). This instruction will be provided to counselors practicing in the PHFA network and to attorneys practicing before the  Philadelphia, Montgomery, and Bucks County Residential Mortgage Diversion courts in Pennsylvania. This course includes a summarized version of NREI 203 Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing.

Date: June 10, 2019

Time: 1:00 PM – 5:15 PM

Cost: Free

CE: 4.0 hours (NIS national)

CLE: 4.0 hours PA (CLE credits)

NREI 111B Master Negotiation and Practicum 

This is an 8-hour training session on “Master Negotiation and Practicum” (providing comprehensive instruction and hands-on practical application of proven negotiation and workout package development strategies aimed at foreclosure avoidance; and particularly in the context of court-imposed deadlines). This instruction and training in back office support strategies and will walk students through actual current cases, both instructor-provided and student-provided cases to counselors practicing in the PHFA network; and to attorneys practicing in Philadelphia, Montgomery, and Bucks County Pennsylvania Residential Mortgage Diversion Courts. This course is designed to provide comprehensive instruction and hands-on practical application of proven negotiation and workout package development strategies aimed at foreclosure avoidance; and particularly in the context of court-imposed limits.

Date: June 11, 2019

Time: 8:00 AM – 5:15 PM

Cost: Free

CE: 8.0 hours (NIS national)

CLE: 8.0 hours PA (CLE credits)

Course Requirements:

For Attorneys:

While a prerequisite course is not required, this course presumes the participant has a basic level of understanding of mortgage loss mitigation tools and options; and particularly their use in the context of court-imposed timelines.

For Housing Counselors:

Housing Counselors participating in this course are required to be employed at an agency that is a part of the PHFA Network and possess a nationally-recognized certification in Mortgage Delinquency or Foreclosure Intervention; or have taken NREI 107 Mortgage Diversion Practices and Procedures Course.

Instructor: Michelle W. Lewis

A forensic real estate expert, fraud examiner, Michelle has been qualified as an expert in federal court. She is and practicing real estate broker/appraiser with over 39 years in the field. She currently serves as President and Chief Executive Officer of Northwest Counseling Service. Michelle has served as a technical advisor on real estate, compliance, and fraud matters to the Office of Housing and Community Development, city of Philadelphia. Michelle is also a principal in a private real estate firm specializing in commercial and investor markets; and that delivers services to governments, attorneys, and other firms by providing expert opinions and testimony, fraud examination, and investigation of questionable practices. She served for 7 years as a technical advisor on real estate matters to the Philadelphia Office of Housing & Community Development, city of Philadelphia. Qualified as an expert in federal court, Michelle brings a wide breadth of experience and knowledge to the profession and has been a provider of expert advice and testimony to some of the largest organizations in the country, including the office of the US Attorney, the US Department of Housing and Urban Development and many private firms. Appointed by the Pennsylvania Governor, Michelle serves on the Pennsylvania Housing Advisory Committee. In 2000, she founded and served as chair of the Philadelphia Predatory Lending Task Force under which she authored a journal article, “Perspectives on Predatory Lending: The Philadelphia Experience”, in the Journal of Affordable Housing & Community Development Law, Summer 2003, Volume 12, Number 4, for the American Bar Association. Michelle serves as School Director of the National Real Estate Institute (NREI), and currently teaches HUD required courses nationally as faculty of the National Community Reinvestment Coalition (NCRC); has taught attorneys, officials of the PA Department of Banking, the PA Human Relations Commission, and housing counselors nationwide.

Follow this link to register now (limited seating)

Click Here to Register

Friedman Schuman Superlawyers

Friedman Schuman, PC, a full-service law firm headquartered in Jenkintown, PA, is proud to announce that Robert A. Bacine, Derek R. Layser, Robert H. Nemeroff and David E. Stern have all been included on the 2019 Super Lawyers list and Melissa Paris Miller and Jennifer L. Damelio have been named as 2019 Super Lawyer Rising Stars.  Congratulations to all for receiving this prestigious honor.

Eight Eastburn and Gray Attorneys Selected for Inclusion in 2019 Pennsylvania SuperLawyers

Doylestown and Blue Bell, PA – Eight attorneys from Eastburn and Gray were selected for inclusion in the 2019 Pennsylvania SuperLawyers list. The lawyers with this distinguished recognition include:

Grace M. Deon

Employment & Labor, Schools & Education, General Litigation

Rising Stars; 2005 to 2007

SuperLawyers; 2013 to present

Sarah A. Eastburn

Estate Planning & Probate, Estate & Trust Litigation, Tax: Consumer

Rising Stars; 2017 to present

Marc D. Jonas

Land Use/Zoning, Government/Cities/Municipalities, Real Estate

SuperLawyers; 2004 to present

Kimberly Litzke

Family Law

Rising Stars; 2005

SuperLawyers; 2013 to present

Kellie A. McGowan

Land Use/Zoning, Real Estate

Rising Stars; 2012 to 2017

SuperLawyers; 2018 to present

Zachary A. Sivertsen

Land Use/Zoning, Legislative & Governmental Affairs, Civil Litigation, Real Estate

Rising Stars; 2018 to present

John A. VanLuvanee

Land Use/Zoning, Real Estate

SuperLawyers; 2008 to present

Robert R. Watson, Jr.

Construction Litigation, General Litigation, Government/ Cities/Municipalities

Rising Stars; 2008, 2010, 2013, 2014

SuperLawyers; 2015 to present

Super Lawyers is a rating service of outstanding lawyers from more than 70 practice areas who have attained a high-degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. This selection process includes independent research, peer nominations and peer evaluations. The result is a credible, comprehensive and diverse listing of exceptional attorneys. For more information about SuperLawyers’ methodologies, visit For more information about Super Lawyers, visit

The tradition of excellence at the law firm of Eastburn and Gray, P.C. began more than 140 years ago and continues today. With law offices in Doylestown, Bucks County and Blue Bell, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, our experienced attorneys provide high quality legal services throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey.  As a full service firm, Eastburn and Gray attorneys practice in diverse areas of the law, effectively meeting the needs of the firm’s clients.

To learn more about our firm, our practice areas and our attorneys, please visit our website:


Doylestown, PA—May 9, 2019. The Southeast Pennsylvania National Organization for Women PAC has joined the growing list of organizations and elected officials who have endorsed Jordan Yeager for Judge of the Court of Common Pleas of Bucks County.


“Fighting for equal rights and justice for all has been the impetus for my entire career as a lawyer, and it’s why I want to serve as a Judge on the Court of Common Pleas. I have spent over 26 years fighting to protect the Constitution’s guaranteed freedoms, and I will continue to fight for those freedoms on behalf of all who come before the Court,” said Yeager.


Yeager’s 2013 landmark victory in the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, the first case in history declaring a state law unconstitutional because it violated the environmental rights of Pennsylvanians, as well as his continued focus on environmental law, have earned him the endorsements of environmental groups including Conservation Voters of PA, Food & Water Action, Sierra Club, and Clean Water Action.


Yeager was overwhelmingly endorsed by the Bucks County Democratic Committee with over 91% of delegates’ votes on the first ballot. He has also been endorsed by state officials including Senator Steve Santarsiero, Senator Maria Colett, Representative Tina Davis, Representative Wendy Ullman, Representative John Galloway, and Representative Perry Warren, and by Bucks County officials, including Commissioner Diane Marseglia, Recorder of Deeds Robin Robinson, Prothonotary Judy Reiss, Controller Neale Dougherty, and Sheriff Milt Warrell. Former State Representative Helen Tai and Former Congressman Patrick Murphy have endorsed Yeager, along with former Democratic Congressional nominee Scott Wallace.


Yeager is seeking both the Democratic and Republican nominations to the Bucks County Court of Common Pleas in the May 21, 2019 primary election. If nominated, he will take part in the general election on November 5.


You can find more information on Yeager at his campaign website:

11 High Swartz Attorneys Named Among PA Super Lawyers and Rising Stars

NORRISTOWN, Pa. (May 9, 2019)High Swartz LLP, a full-service law firm with offices in Norristown and Doylestown, Pennsylvania, is pleased to announce that  11 of its attorneys have been named among Pennsylvania’s 2019 Super Lawyers and Rising Stars. Among the highlights are two inclusions on the 50 Top Female Lawyers in Pennsylvania list going to Melissa M. Boyd and Mary Cushing Doherty of the High Swartz Domestic Relations practice.

The Super Lawyers list recognizes no more than 5 percent of attorneys in each state. The Super Lawyers Rising Stars list recognizes no more than 2.5 percent of attorneys in each state. To be eligible for inclusion in Rising Stars, a candidate must be either 40 years old or younger, or in practice for 10 years or less. High Swartz 2019 Super Lawyers and Rising Stars are listed below in alphabetical order.

Melissa M. Boyd: Has been nominated to her 5th consecutive Super lawyer list  preceded by 6 Rising Star distinctions. On top of her streak, Missy has been nominated to 3 Super Lawyers Top Lists in Pennsylvania. Those accolades are 100 Top Lawyers in Pennsylvania, 100 Top Lawyers in Philadelphia and 50 Top Female Attorneys in Pennsylvania. Missy is a partner and family law attorney with High Swartz and advocates in various areas including divorce, prenuptial and postnuptial agreements, child custody and child support, equitable distribution, alimony, adoptions, protection from abuse and juvenile law.

David J. Brooman: 2019 marks the return to the Super Lawyers list for David. This is his 10th selection. As a land development and litigation attorney, David J. Brooman has more than three decades experience in zoning and land use development, as well as environmental law.

Kevin Cornish: Recently elected as a partner at High Swartz, Kevin receives his 8th Super Lawyers Rising Star selection. Kevin focuses his practice on commercial, civil, and contract & multistate litigation support. His clients include individuals as well as local, regional, and national businesses up and down the east coast.

Mary Cushing Doherty: This will be Mary’s 16th consecutive selection to the Super Lawyers list. Along with her distinction, she’ll join the 50 Top Female Lawyers in Pennsylvania list. With a distinguished record of professional and community service, Mary Cushing Doherty has more than 35 years of legal experience as a family law lawyer. She concentrates her practice on all aspects of marital dissolution and family law issues including divorce, child support, custody, spousal support and alimony, premarital agreement asset protection, complex property division, and is the chair of High Swartz’s Family Law practice.

Elizabeth Early: has been nominated to her third consecutive Rising Star selection. Her areas of specialization include divorce, custody, support, equitable distribution, pre and post-nuptial agreements, parenting coordination and abuse matters. Liz also serves as court-appointed counsel and guardian for minor children.

Mark R. Fischer: Mark has been nominated to his second consecutive Super Lawyer designation. He focuses his practice primarily on representing businesses in breach of contract, payment collection, construction defect, and consumer protection disputes throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

Gilbert P. High, Jr.: This will be Gil’s 14 section in a row. Gil’s impressive career is devoted primarily to the practice of municipal and Real Estate and Land Use Law. He regularly speaks on issues pertaining to municipal liability, particularly regarding the maintenance of the Urban Forest, a subject on which he has lectured nationally.

Thomas E. Panzer: This is Tom’s first and much-deserved selection to the Super Lawyers’ list. Thomas E. Panzer, a workers’ compensation attorney, joined High Swartz in 2016 as a result of a merger with McNamara, Bolla & Panzer, Attorneys at Law, a firm for which he served as Managing Partner. Mr. Panzer is active in his community and is currently the Bucks County, Pennsylvania Treasurer.

Thomas D. Rees: Elected to his 14th Super Lawyers list, Tom heads the firm’s Litigation and Employment Practice.  He focuses his practice primarily on employment law and private education law. In the education area, Tom represents a number of independent schools in the Philadelphia area, handling employment, student discipline, contract, and governance matters.

Joel D. Rosen: As High Swartz’s Managing partner, Joel has been a Super Lawyer since 2017. With more than 30 years of legal experience as a corporate law attorney, Joel Rosen’s areas of practice include franchise law, business and commercial law, employment law, trademark/copyright law and commercial leasing.

Brittany M. Yurchyk: High Swartz congratulates Brittany’s first nomination to the Super Lawyers’ list as a Rising Star. Specializing in alternative dispute resolution, Brittany concentrates her family law practice on  equitable distribution, child custody, child and spousal support, abuse and domestic relations.

How were the High Swartz Super Lawyers selected to the list?

Super Lawyers nominates the best attorneys using a unique selection process. Peer evaluations and nominations  are combined with independent research. Nominees are evaluated on 12 indicators from professional achievement through peer nominations. Nominations are made on an annual, state-by-state basis. The Super Lawyers objective is to create a credible, comprehensive and diverse listing of outstanding attorneys on a national level that can be used as a resource for attorneys and consumers searching for legal counsel. As an aid to those selecting a lawyer, Super Lawyers only selects outstanding local lawyers who are able to be retained by the public.

About High Swartz: High Swartz LLP is a general practice law firm serving clients in the Montgomery and Bucks counties, the Delaware Valley and throughout Pennsylvania from offices in Norristown and Doylestown. Established in 1914, High Swartz serves the needs of businesses, municipalities, government entities, nonprofits and individuals. With offices in Bucks County and Montgomery County, the full-service law firm provides comprehensive counsel and legal support to individuals and business entities of all sizes across a broad spectrum of industries throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey. For more information, go to