Erik Arena is a family law and divorce attorney who tactfully and assertively represents people in separation and divorce matters, including division of property, alimony, custody, and child support in Maryland and the District of Columbia.
An Eagle Scout, Erik takes the oath to “help other people at all times” seriously, relentlessly pursuing what he believes is right. Erik guides people through the separation and divorce process with dignity and empathy (especially for their children), and is tenacious in representing their interests. While he realizes that the end of a marriage can be demoralizing, he reminds his clients that self-pity is tempting but ultimately counter-productive. He encourages them to take ownership of their situations and to be active in improving their own circumstances. He champions them in negotiation, mediation, or litigation to resolve their disputes efficiently so they can move forward to the next stage of life.
Erik is particularly experienced in representing high net worth people in property and alimony disputes, including those involving “chasing dollars”—finding money that’s been moved, uncovering concealed assets, or analyzing records and building models to accurately identify income from all sources. Erik is drawn to the hard cases, those nobody else wants or that are long-shot challenges. These often include spousal support, asset distribution, child support, or high-conflict custody and visitation disputes.
Erik is listed in Best Lawyers in America for Family Law and in the Maryland and DC editions of Super Lawyers. Bethesda Magazine calls Erik one of the “Top 10 Family Law Attorneys Under 40.” He also has been recognized by his peers in the bar association with the President’s Citation for Outstanding Service and the Bar Leader award.
Erik isn’t determined only in the courtroom—he’s a “Tough Mudder” competitor who’s done two of the World’s Toughest Mudders (24 hours in the Vegas desert described as “the most extreme, insane, imposing, pulse-pounding, heart-stopping 24-hour obstacle course challenge on the planet”). The Churchill grad brings the same focused commitment to his service to the community where he grew up, which includes supporting Montgomery County Special Olympics athletes and feeding the homeless at Shepherd’s Table (a continuation of “helping other people at all times”).
- University of Maryland School of Law (J.D., 2004 with honors; The Public Service Award for Distinguished Pro Bono Service)
- Bucknell University (B.A., Political Science and Government, Legal Studies, 2001, cum laude)
- District of Columbia
- U.S. District Court
- Judicial law clerk for the Honorable Dennis M. McHugh of the Circuit Court for Montgomery County, Maryland
Honors and awards
- Listed in Best Lawyers in America, Family Law (2014-present)
- Listed in Super Lawyers Maryland, Family Law (2016-present)
- Listed in Super Lawyers Washington, DC, Family Law (2010-present)
- Listed as “Rising Star” by Maryland Super Lawyers, Family Law (2010-2015)
- Listed as one of “Top 10 Family Law Attorneys Under 40” by Bethesda Magazine (2017)
- Received Presidential Citation for Outstanding Service from the Bar Association of Montgomery County (2014)
- Named a “Bar Leader” by the Montgomery County Bar Foundation (2011)
- Received The University of Maryland Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Diversity Recognition Award (2005)
- Bar Association of Montgomery County, Maryland (Co-chair, Family Law Section, 2010-2011, and current member; Member, Community Outreach Committee, 2013-present; Co-Chair, Creating an Improved Tomorrow Program, 2013-2015)
- Maryland State Bar Association (Member, 2004-present)
- DC Bar Association (Member, 2006-present)
Lerch Early’s experienced family law attorneys help people resolve separation and divorce issues in Maryland and Washington, DC with the least possible impact on their emotions and their wallets.
News & insights
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NOTE: Updated on 05/01/2023 after the addition of several newly hired attorneys. Multiple Lerch Early attorneys have been selected for inclusion in the 2023 Washington, DC Super Lawyers and “Rising …
Multiple Lerch Early attorneys have been selected for inclusion in the 2023 Maryland Super Lawyers and “Rising Stars” lists. Super Lawyers is a listing of outstanding lawyers from more than …
What does and does not qualify as “cheating” is, apparently, debatable, as evidenced by the recent pop culture/social media scandals (think Adam Levine, Behati Prinsloo, and Sumner Stroh). However, in …
Eight Lerch Early attorneys have been recognized by Washingtonian on its 2023 Top Attorneys lists. Divorce attorneys Erik Arena, Erin Kopelman, and Deborah Reiser; employment attorney Marc Engel, estates and …
For many residents of the DMV, straddling state lines is a fact of life. Many of us locals work in one jurisdiction, live in another, and enjoy downtime in all …