The Ruth Dayan Law Firm, the largest family law firm in Israel, employs 11 lawyers, as well as interns and legal secretaries. A total of 17 employees, all of them women.
Dayan, who lives in Tel Aviv, has an LL.B degree in law from Tel Aviv University and a degree with honors in criminology from Bar-Ilan University. After being certified as a member of the bar, she took a number of certificate courses in Israel and New York in the fields of family law and joint mediation.
In 2003, Dayan published the Hebrew-language book The Israeli Guide to Divorce, which serves as a guide for thousands of divorcees. In 2019 her second Hebrew book, Karma Is a Bitch: A Divorce Attorney’s Journal, was released. Published in English as The Karma Effect, the book is a bestseller on Amazon.
Dayan says that in the past year, perhaps due to the coronavirus, there has been a large increase in divorce petitions and issues related to family relationships. She has a weekly blog, where she writes about her experiences as a lawyer. The popular blog averages 45,000 to 50,000 hits a month.
As an attorney and notary, Dayan is known for her uncompromising professionalism, her comprehensive understanding of the complex aspects of family law, and her personal and intelligent treatment of her clients. The positive results are reflected in her achieving her clients’ goals. Dayan says that the ability to identify the strengths and weaknesses of each case and knowing from the first session how it will develop, along with the ability to distinguish between the important and less important, help her chart her course.
The dynamic Dayan is an enthusiast of extreme sports, She runs marathons, enjoys diving, and has climbed Mount Kilimanjaro. She says that in court, her skills in extreme sports come in extremely handy. “I come very prepared, and then I exercise my instincts. I react quickly, think a few steps ahead, and I don’t give up,” she asserts.
The law firm handles family and inheritance law issues. “We handle very large cases, and our conduct is premium. This means that the client receives close personal treatment from a team consisting of at least two lawyers and other staff members, and we are available for our clients 24/7,” Dayan explains.
Each case has an orderly strategic and legal preparation. “We work according to a method I call SOT, which stands for strategy, operation, and team,” she says.
Here is how Dayan describes her plan of action:
STRATEGY: We must first define what our goals are. If no goals are set, someone else will lead the process and not us. Defining goals allows us to see the big picture – i.e., everything that is involved in the case. There are so many elements in these portfolios. In a divorce case, there are usually children, alimony, common property. There are many issues, and we must prioritize correctly. That sometimes means sacrificing some of what we want in order to obtain what is most important.
Judicial attention is limited; therefore, it is impossible to deal with all issues at the same level of importance. If you decide what to engage in, you control and direct judicial attention. Sometimes there is no choice but to sacrifice something, to ignore an argument in order to succeed in battle.
The next thing is to decide before which court we want to appear -- a rabbinical court or a family court. The common belief is that the rabbinical court is good for men and the family court is good for women. But that is a misconception. It all depends on the case and its details. Sometimes the situation is the opposite. Lawyers who have experience will know which court to go to in their client’s case.
OPERATION: This is the next step, our working method. We have a detailed questionnaire through which we learn a great deal about the client. We research everything and gather information from many sources. We check previous procedures, search social media wherever possible, and then prepare a detailed schedule. After we have gathered all the information and decided on a strategy, we proceed to prepare the statement of claim.
We prepare a base for case management and, of course, prepare well for any discussion. There is no way we will go to a discussion unprepared.
TEAM: Our team is very carefully selected. All our employees are committed and thorough. All our employees must have a high level of emotional intelligence, otherwise they will not remain part of the team. We meet people at the most difficult moments of their lives, so we must be sensitive and empathetic. In fact, 80% of our clientele come from recommendations. The response we get from clients is nothing short of amazing.