With a father who practiced family law throughout her childhood and as a mother herself to a three-year-old son, Meredith Hastings, 3L, knew that a summer externship with the Charleston County Family Court would be an excellent fit for her.
“I went to law school with an interest in family law. This clerkship is teaching me the proper way to try cases in the Family Court by watching both experienced and new lawyers present their arguments,” said Hastings.
This opportunity with the Family Court allows Hastings to get experience with all types of domestic matters including divorce, child custody and visitation, child support, equitable distribution and abuse and neglect.
A typical day involves sitting on the bench with a local Family Court judge or doing research and writing memos. Through these daily tasks, Hastings has had the opportunity to learn proper courtroom demeanor, what it means to be prepared, attention to detail while clearly separating issues and the way a Family Court judge views various situations.
Through her work with the judiciary she sees firsthand how they can make a difference. “The judge’s passion for the welfare of children is inspiring. He started a custody program, now being tested in other counties, that aims to quickly resolve custody matters far before property division and other matters that flow from a divorce or otherwise occur, thus serving to protect the child(ren) from being exposed to prolonged custody litigation and temporary situations,” said Hastings.