SCOTT K. MATTHEWS PLLC 
Attorney at Law
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PRACTICE AREAS
 
FAMILY LAW Family law includes Divorce, Separation, Parentage, Child Support, Protection Orders, Modifications, Relocations and all the other conflicts that arise when people live together. It includes relationships where the parties were never married and same-sex relationships, with or without marriage. The solutions run from simple agreements where the parties never appear in court to full-blown trials where the court divides property and businesses, decrees parenting plans and sets child support and maintenance. Because the parties, and any children, have to live with the results, I start out with my clients carefully going over what they want and need, explaining how the law applies in their case, and mapping out a strategy to get them thought the proceedings and on with their lives.
 
LANDLORD / TENANT Detailed statutory regimes govern leasing agreements and disputes in Washington. A tenant or landlord can lose important rights by not following the timing and procedures as the law requires. Most residential disputes do not involve enough money to be worth a lawsuit; a negotiated settlement is generally in both parties' interests.  I represent both tenants and landlords in SW Washington, and I believe that my experience gives me insights into both parties' needs and outlooks that lead to quicker and more equitable settlements.
 
ELDER LAW Although powers of attorney, vulnerable adult protection, and guardianships often come together with an older client, these services are valuable and needed by people of all ages. I can help clients in hospitals and nursing homes, those who want to be prepared before decisions ever need to be made, or parties such as family members who are trying to protect the rights, finances, or persons of friends or family members.
 
CONSTRUCTION DISPUTES Construction disputes can arise between homeowners acting as their own contractors and their subcontractors, between general contractors and subs, or in combinations. Contractors and subs may file liens against owners, and owners may press suits against contractors and their bonds. Each of these actions requires certain steps be followed, and each has timing requirements that must be met. My experience in engineering and construction helps me understand your situation and come up with the best strategy for getting your project fixed or back on track.
 
CONTRACTS A contract needs to do three things. First, it needs to properly incorporate the deal as the parties understand it. If the contract reflects reality, it is more likely to be followed and less likely to lead to a dispute. Second, it needs to clearly outline the duties of each party and the consequences of a breach, so if a dispute ever arises it can be resolved quickly. Finally, it needs to protect the client's interests in case the other party breaches. Good contracts are clear and easy to read, and don't contain extra verbiage or unneeded clauses. I write contracts for all manner of situations.