Mr. Matison has a very strong background as a trial lawyer for over 40 years and when he began practicing divorce law 30 years ago, he was never afraid to try a case and he never will be. Today he is known for coming in for ninth-inning relief on many cases, for taking on tough cases that others, frankly, can't or don't want to take to trial. His court room experience is one of his strengths. Even though fewer than one percent of New Jersey's divorce cases are tried to conclusion, his trial skills are ready to be utilized.
There are no winners in divorce - to many it is a lose-lose situation, and the objective is to minimize the losses. The children suffer. There are personal upheaval and emotional trauma. There are unbelievably difficult issues, and he is sensitive to every one of them, every step of the way.
But at its core, after the emotions are stripped away, divorce is about a business partnership that's being dissolved. It is a process of valuing assets and reaching an agreement on equitable distribution. To be a good matrimonial attorney, a lawyer has to give the client a lot of commercial and business advice.
There are many other issues, especially psychological issues. As the old saying goes, in criminal law you see bad people at their best, but in divorce law you see good people at their worst.
When someone comes to Mr. Matison for the first time, he will sit and listen for an hour - or more if necessary. If he senses there is real indecision about getting the divorce, he will recommend that the person see another professional - a marriage counselor or a therapist. But if the person wants to proceed, he will never promise what he knows can't be delivered. Some matrimonial attorneys over-promise, and that's a serious problem. People are led to greater disappointment at a time when they can least deal with it.
He has kept his practice small by design. It allows him to do what he does best - practice law. Some large firms have approached him about running their matrimonial departments, but he is happy in his own practice.
He loves what he does. He can't think of an attorney whose advice has greater impact than the advice of a family lawyer. They are there at a key moment in people's lives to protect their interests and to see to it that they can constructively move on with their lives.