From a very young age, Laura Cervizzi has advocated for others. “I have always wanted to protect and help people, and this drew me to study law.”
“My mother, Jean Annese, has been an inspiration to me,” Cervizzi adds. “She went back to school to get her master’s and become a school psychologist while she was raising her daughters. She taught my sister and me to be strong, determined, and educated women.”
Today those attributes of strength and determination shine through in the many honors, accolades, and awards Cervizzi has received for her family law practice, Cervizzi & Associates.
Cervizzi began her career as an assistant district attorney for Middlesex County. She was contemplating her next move when she met the legendary Boston family lawyer Monroe Inker and handed him her resume. He hired her to work at his firm, White, Inker & Aronson, soon after. “I found my passion for family law while working there,” she says. “It allows me to do what I love to do—to advocate for others, to be compassionate, and to help.”
Family law can also be challenging and emotionally exhausting work. But three decades later—and 20 years after starting her own firm—Cervizzi still feels as though it’s her calling and her passion.
“You can’t do this work for 30 years, day in and day out, if you don’t love it,” she says. In fact, Cervizzi says she doesn’t find it exhausting at all. Instead, she feels energized by being able to help clients through some the hardest times of their lives. “You’re dealing with someone’s life…
The case of their life…they could lose their kids, they could lose their money; maybe they’ve suffered abuse,” she says. “The divorce lawyer you choose really, really matters.”
That’s why Cervizzi says she never grows weary of advocating for clients when they need it most, and feels grateful she’s been able to grow a team of talented lawyers who can assist as many people as possible. “I don’t tire of it. I still care the same way I did at the beginning, 30 years later, and now I’m just surrounded by a really great team and we can help more people,” she says.
In fact, you may have seen that great team in TV and print ads and noted something: They’re all women. Cervizzi says she didn’t set out to hire all women—the team naturally evolved that way—but clients often like that about Cervizzi & Associates attorneys. She clarifies that “We, however, represent both men and women, a fact some people confuse because we are an all-woman firm.”
How they do their job isn’t about gender, though; it’s about results.
“You have to have a good product at the end of the day,” Cervizzi says. “You need to work hard, you need to be prepared, you need to be a good lawyer, an ethical lawyer.”
For Cervizzi, that also means being a good leader and team player. “I think I’m a great boss, because I’m not the boss,” she says. “I’m just one of the members of the team.”
That also means understanding what your teammates need to stay happy and productive. Cervizzi and Associates highly values work-life balance; it’s not the kind of firm that lawyers worry they’ll get fired if they’re sick or need to care for a child or aging parent. “I think they’re much more productive and appreciative,” Cervizzi says. “I want to allow them to be lawyers and professionals, but also have their families, their children, and not feel like they’re missing out on either.”
Work-life balance is actually why Cervizzi started her own firm to begin with; she wanted more time with her children. “I never thought it would grow to this,” she says. But grow it has, and with intention.
In family law, there are volatile emotions, tangled finances, bitter custody disputes, and lots of worry and pain. As Cervizzi notes, no one wants a divorce. But if you need one, you can find compassionate and skilled attorneys at Cervizzi and Associates, she says, adding that with offices in North Reading, Boston, and Beverly, you don’t have to trek into the city—paying exorbitant hourly rates for the work and for parking on top of it—to get results.