People

Claire Walczak

Partner
Family & Relationship Law

Claire is an accredited family law specialist and a partner in Lander & Rogers' Melbourne family and relationship law office.

Having practised exclusively in family law since her admission to practice, Claire is passionate about her role as a family lawyer. She takes pride in providing specialist legal advice to her clients and empowering them with the financial independence and emotional security to plan for the next chapter of their lives.

Claire's clients frequently comment on her attention to detail, responsiveness, and commercial approach. She understands that navigating the Australian family law system can be a complex experience, so she endeavours to provide clear, measured and concise family law advice to help her clients feel well-informed throughout the process. She understands that each client has different needs, interests and goals, and tailors her advice accordingly.

Claire is an advocate for alternative dispute resolution and, where possible, encourages her clients to engage in mediation before considering litigation. Where litigation is necessary, Claire is a fearless advocate and strives to achieve the best results for her clients, should their matter involve a property settlement and/or spousal maintenance, or arrangements in relation to children.

In recent years, Claire has expanded her practice to work with family offices and high net worth individuals, drafting financial agreements for the protection of inter-generational wealth. This advice often involves working alongside her clients' network of trusted financial advisors and is particularly important for families seeking to successfully preserve, grow and transfer their legacy across future generations.

Claire is a member of the international family law team at Lander & Rogers and services clients located overseas, including expat Australians living in Singapore and the United Kingdom.

In addition to attaining her specialist accreditation in family law, Claire is currently studying a Master of Business Administration at Melbourne Business School. She has been recognised by the legal profession in several industry awards, including as a finalist for "Senior Associate of the Year - BigLaw" at the Women In Law Awards (2021), the Lawyers Weekly 30 Under 30 "Wellness Advocate" award (2019) and the Law Institute of Victoria 15th Victorian Legal Awards "Wellbeing Award" (2019).

Experience

Claire's expertise includes:

  • property and financial matters including property settlement and spousal maintenance
  • parenting matters including negotiating appropriate parenting arrangements following separation and complex parenting issues
  • drafting financial agreements
  • de facto property matters
  • same sex property and parenting matters
  • child support matters
  • enforcement, contravention and registration of child support agreements
  • mediation.

Career highlights

Claire's career highlights include:

  • successfully obtaining final parenting orders in the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia permitting children to relocate both interstate and overseas
  • successfully obtaining a step-parent adoption order on behalf of her clients in the County Court of Victoria
  • successfully defending a de facto threshold matter whereby her client was at risk of losing millions of dollars
  • successfully obtaining injunctions to prevent the sale of properties whereby the other party was attempting to sell the properties pursuant to a fire sale.

Client feedback

"Going through a divorce is a stressful process, especially when the other side is highly aggressive and belligerent. I appreciated Claire’s guidance and overall approach as it was calm, clear and, most importantly, always pragmatic. I felt that Claire was only ever focused on the best possible outcome for me instead of exacerbating the conflicts with my ex-wife to create more legal work, which I now understand to be a rarity. While I hope never to need Claire’s services again, I have been very comfortable referring her to a couple of friends already and will continue to do so."

"Things that I learnt about Claire when she represented me in my financial settlement include: she is intelligent with an incredible memory for details, she is organised, calm and considered, has a remarkable sense of justice and an unexpected determination to battle for what’s right. Claire gave me incredibly good legal advice, she didn’t make mistakes, and I felt she truly cared about me as a person as well as a client. We worked together over an extended period and my trust in her only increased with time. When my case finally settled I felt a sense of pride in my whole legal team. Claire and everyone at Landers ran an honest, well considered case on my behalf, they never once steered me wrong and the eventual outcome they achieved was outstanding. I couldn’t be more grateful."

"Facing the challenging and emotionally charged situation of divorce, I knew I needed an attorney who not only possessed expertise in family law but also understood the complex dynamics that can arise within such cases. From the moment we had our initial consultation, it was evident that you possessed an exceptional grasp of family law and a genuine understanding of the intricacies surrounding it. I didn’t have as much luck with the small family law office I engaged the services of and wish I had simply engaged your services upfront. Throughout the entire process, you demonstrated unwavering professionalism, a deep knowledge of the legal system, and an unmatched ability to navigate the complexities of my case. Your keen attention to detail and analytical approach were instrumental in achieving an outcome that far exceeded my expectations. What truly stood out was your empathetic and compassionate demeanour, which made an emotionally trying time more manageable. You were not just a legal representative, but also a supportive advocate, guiding me with patience and sensitivity through each step of the divorce process."

"Claire Walczak was a pillar of strength for our family as we were navigating through the process of Step Parent adoption. Claire had a sound understanding of the legalities that surrounded this process and was able to appropriately and compassionately explain in details what our options were, how and why, whilst trying to communicate with a complex situation with the other party. We are so grateful for the time patience help understanding and result we received with Claire."

Insights by Claire