“How to Do Your Own Divorce in California”

Author and founder of Nolo Press to speak at 20th anniversary & conference of California Association of Legal Document Assistants.

SANTA CRUZ, Calif—-Ed Sherman, Esq., award-winning author of the landmark bestseller “How to Do Your Own Divorce in California,” and founder of Nolo Press, will be among the featured speakers at the 20th Anniversary and Annual conference of the California Association of Legal Document Assistants (CALDA) on October 27-29 at the Doubletree Hotel in Ontario, California.

Sherman, who is also credited with founding the independent paralegal industry, founded Nolo Press in 1971 with the landmark bestseller, How to Do Your Own Divorce in California, and has been an innovator in the field of law ever since. 

In addition to authoring 18 books, videos and software, Sherman created independent paralegal services in 1973, which grew into an industry and transformed the face of legal services.  He co-founded Divorce Helpline and Couples Helpline, 1990 and 2004 respectively, operated by the law and mediation firm of Sherman Williams Lober & Thompson, which declines to represent anyone or go to court. 

Sherman’s most recent innovation is the Couples Contract, featured in his latest books, “Legal Essentials for California Couples,” and “The Couples Contract for a Lasting Relationship.”  Sherman is currently owner of Nolo Occidental based in Santa Cruz.

At the conference, Sherman will be unveiling his company’s newest software, “DealMaker Settlement Agreement.”

“I am excited about introducing our new “DealMaker Settlement Agreement” Software as the idea originally came from CALDA’s discussion forum and the specific goal is to help LDAs broaden the reach of their practices and deliver a more sophisticated agreement to more people than was previously possible,” said Sherman. “I am depending on feedback from CALDA members to make sure this software has everything they want and need.”

Carol Ludlow, president of CALDA, says, “Mr. Sherman has helped shape and guide this profession to what it is today, and we are honored to share CALDA’s accomplishments with him on this auspicious occasion.”

The 2006 CALDA conference will offer a wide variety of information, MCLE (Mandatory Continuing Legal Education) Approved educational classes (CALDA is a State Bar of California MCLE Provider), and chances to network with legal document assistants from across the state as well as vendors offering their latest products and demonstrations.

On Saturday, October 28, between 10 am to 2 pm, free legal self-help brochures and other information on Legal Document Assistants and the California Association of Legal Document Assistants will be available to the public in the hotel lobby.

Legal Document Assistants were once commonly known as Independent Paralegals. However, as of January 1st, 2000, only those Paralegals working directly for attorneys may now be referred to as Paralegals. Those formerly known as Independent Paralegals are now officially known as Legal Document Assistants (LDAs).

LDA’s have the same educational background as a paralegal and are REQUIRED by law to be registered and bonded in the county in which they have their principal place of business. An LDA is an experienced professional who is authorized to prepare legal documents for a client, but only at the direction of the client. In other words, an LDA is there to assist the “self-help” client handle their own legal matters without the cost of an attorney. A Legal Document Assistant is not a lawyer. By law, they cannot give you legal advice or represent you in the courts in any matter.

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