After earning his Bachelor of Arts degree at Lewis and Clark College, Michael H. Scholl became interested in the law while working as a newspaper reporter in his native state of Oregon. Following a rough-and-tumble career as an aspiring journalist and writer, Michael moved to Tacoma, Washington, to attend the former University of Puget Sound School of Law. Michael earned his Juris Doctor degree in 1992 shortly before his 39th birthday. Since his admission to the Washington bar later that year, Michael has practiced law primarily in Pierce County, Washington, where he founded Scholl Law Firm, P.S. in 1994. Although he has had extensive experience in criminal defense, Michael's practice has for the past several years strongly emphasized family law.
Michael is committed to conflict resolution without the high costs, both emotional and financial, of prolonged litigation. While fully prepared to take divorce, child relocation, and other disputed family law cases to trial in Superior Court, Michael firmly believes that such litigation is so destructive and costly to parents and their children that all other avenues of conflict resolution should be explored or pursued as an alternative to trial.
Michael is a highly trained practitioner of the Collaborative Law model of divorce and family law, in which both parties and their lawyers work as a team to resolve the parties' differences without either side resorting to adversarial litigation in the court system. Michael is also extensively trained and experienced in mediation of divorce and family law disputes, both as an advocate for his own clients, and as a neutral mediator. Michael serves as a volunteer mediator for family law settlement mediations at the Pierce County Center for Dispute Resolution, and for Pierce County Superior Court.
In 2007, Michael was appointed as a Commissioner Pro Tem of the Pierce County Superior Court, and frequently presides over a broad range of contested civil hearings consisting of primarily of family law, domestic violence, probate, and landlord-tenant matters. Michael's experience as a judicial officer presiding in a courtroom, have provided a practical legal perspective that enhances his own courtroom advocacy skills.
The 2009 president of the TacomaPierce County Bar Association Family Law Section, Michael also sits on the board of directors of the Collaborative Law Professionals of Pierce County. Michael is a member of the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals (IACP), and is also a member of the Family Law sections of both the Washington State Bar Association and the American Bar Association.
Michael and his wife, Dona, enjoy relaxing at the Oregon Coast; experiencing the culture, cuisine, and architecture of various regions of the United States; and spending time with their two young grandchildren. They are privileged to share their Tacoma, home with Shasta, a retired racing greyhound, and Frank, an inordinately vocal cat.
- Seattle University, School of Law, Seattle, Washington,
- Lewis and Clark College, Portland, Oregon,
- Professional Associations and Memberships:
- Tacoma Municipal Court, Tacoma, Washington, 1999 - Present
- Judge Pro Tempore
- American Bar Association, 1993 - Present
- National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, 1998 - Present
- Washington Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, 1997 - Present
- Elect Gerry Alexander to Washington Supreme Court, 1994
- Chairman, Committee