Ashley Martin, Published May 01 2012. The Dickinson Press
After 18 years of practicing law in Dickinson, Sandra K. Kuntz stepped out on her own. She opened Legal Edge Solutions, PLLC on Villard Street April 2.
“We just needed to spin off,” she said. “It’s just a good fit and good timing. The economy is booming and the community needs resources.”
She and two paralegals, Amanda Kessel and Miranda Marx, focus primarily on family law.
“I’ve done everything from child support, divorce, custody, adoptions, juvenile work and I’ve also been part of a number task forces where we revise the legislation in North Dakota,” Kuntz said. “In fact, in 2009 we made a major revision of a lot of the laws that govern the best interest of the child, like labels we use. We switched from using things like custody and visitation to mandating a parenting plan.”
The office makes clients “feel at home,” Marx said. “They’re comforted by the fact that we are a smaller office and you get to greet them face to face instead of going through many different people before you actually reach the person you are trying to talk with. I think when you first come into a law office it can be a scary thing, so I think having us be right up front to greet them is a nice piece that we’ve added here.”
Kuntz said family law is a tougher avenue, but she enjoys working with children and their families.
“With family law you learn to be good in a number of areas because it covers such a broad spectrum,” Kuntz said. “You touch everything from families and those dynamics and their emotions and custody-type things. You learn how to negotiate well. Once you get through sort of the parenting elements there’s the financial pieces that come into play.”
She likes showing people how to work together and giving them skills to communicate better.
“I enjoy the teaching part of things,” Kuntz said. “That’s what drew me to family law.”
She also offers mediation.
“Because they’ll inevitably have kids in common, friends in common, something in common, even just the community in common where they’ll constantly interact in some fashion,” Kuntz said. “We’re able to give them some of those skills to leave their partnership on better terms.”
She and her staff continue learning skills, especially now that they are in their own office.
“I think it’s been a great transition,” Kessel said. “It’s a nice change in pace from what we were doing before. It’s a new skillset that we need to learn how to do by ourselves.”
Kuntz said an increase in population has impacted the local court system.
“With growth, you’re seeing our courts get harder and harder to access and when you come through our office we can do it a lot faster,” she added.
Legal Edge Solutions is at 536 W. Villard Street. To make an appointment, call 701-483-4507.