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About Laurie Israel


Practice Areas: Collaborative Divorce, Collaborative Law, Divorce Mediation, Divorce Marital Mediation (Mediation to Stay Married), Estate Planning and Administration, Probate of Estates, Divorce Law, Tax Law, Prenuptial Agreements, Postnuptial Agreements, Real Estate.

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LAURIE ISRAEL began her practice of law in 1987 as a tax lawyer in the Boston firm Foley, Hoag and Eliot (now Foley Hoag). In January, 1991, she commenced her independent practice in Coolidge Corner.  The firm now has four lawyers, and has been operating as Israel, Van Kooy & Days, LLC. since January, 2010.  Laura E. Days has been with the firm since 2005;  Karen Van Kooy since 2007, and Heather Hoffman since 1998.

Laurie at her swearing in ceremony on December 22, 1987

LAURIE has been continuously rated as an A-V attorney by Martindale-Hubbell since 1997.

LAURIE ISRAEL focuses her practice on family law and estate planning and administration. She is an original member of Massachusetts Collaborative Law Council and is a former member of its Board of Directors. Laurie actively works in the fields of Collaborative Divorce and Collaborative Practice. She has been practicing collaborative divorce in Massachusetts for 16 years.  She believes it is especially helpful for divorces where couples have been married for many years and when there are complex financial issues to sort out.  Laurie also a significant portion of her working hours on mediated divorces, negotiated divorces, and also serving as reviewing attorney for mediations conducted by other mediators.  Laurie’s prenuptial agreement practice (as a mediator and as client counsel) has been a very significant part of her practice.  She writes widely on this topic, most recently in The Huffington Post.

LAURIE is a member of the Massachusetts Council on Family Mediation, and a former board member of the organization.  She frequently writes for the quarterly journal of the MCFM.  LAURIE was instrumental in the writing of theMCFM website,

LAURIE is one of the originators of a new area in mediation:  Marital Mediation.  (This field is also known as Mediation to Stay Married and Marriage Mediation.)  She has taught mediators how to use mediation to help people sustain and improve their marriages  throughout the couuntry.   Her interest in marital mediation came as a natural corollary to the divorce work.  The patterns of marriage destruction become very clear to divorce attorneys, and marital mediators can help identify these patterns before it becomes too late.

People who wish to stay in their marriages but are having significant problems have started to meet with her both as couples in mediation, and as individuals. Some of these marital mediations result in postnuptial agreements which help the couple move on to a better, more satisfying marriage.  Read what Laurie has to say about Marital Mediation on the Articles page.

As regular parts of her practice, LAURIE drafts and negotiates Prenuptial Agreements and Postnuptial Agreements. She believes that these are agreements that must be carefully drawn and considered with much thought, as they affect one of the major underpinnings (financial) of a very important relationship — marriage. When done without sufficient thought and sensitivity, they can work to hurt a marriage.  See her recent articles on the articles page here, and in The Huffington Post.

LAURIE started her career as a tax lawyer at Foley, Hoag and Eliot, in Boston.   She spends a significant portion of her time at work doing estate plans (simple and complex), including trusts.  She also handles the probates of decedents’ estates. She finds this work a very fulfilling part of her practice. Tax is still an important part of her practice as it relates to divorces, estate planning, and probate of estates.  In the past, she has had extensive experience in real estate, which knowledge also informs her work in divorce, estate planning and probate of estates.

Laurie’s articles on various topics appear in the Huffington Post, the  Massachusetts Council on Family Mediation Quarterly, Massachusetts Collaborative Law Council Journal, Lawyers Weekly, International Association of Collaborative Professional Collaborative Review,, and can be found on the Articles page of this website.

Laurie has presented on various topics at conferences throughout the United States. Her topics are Marital Mediation, Mediating Prenuptial Agreements and Alimony.  Among her venues were presentations at the Family Section of the Association for Conflict Resolution, the annual Association for Conflict Resolution Conference and the Massachusetts Council on Family Mediation.

Laurie graduated from Barnard College in 1967 cum laude, and from The Dickinson School of Law (now part of Pennsylvania State University) magna cum laude in 1987. She was born in Newark, New Jersey in 1946.

She is a member of the Massachusetts Council on Family Mediation, and the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals.

Laurie’s outside interests include reading, art, and music.

Others in Israel, Van Kooy & Days, LLC.

KAREN VAN KOOY,  a member of the firm, joined the the firm in October, 2007 to practice in the area of family law.  She works in the area of negotiated divorces, litigated divorces, divorce mediation, marital mediation, collaborative divorce, and second parent adoptions.

LAURA E. DAYS, a member of the firm,  joined the firm in 2005.  She works in the fields of real estate, estate planning, tax and probate of estates. As part of her real estate work, Laura does residential conveyancing, writes title insurance policies, and represents buyers and sellers in the purchase and sale of real estate.

HEATHER HOFFMAN has been of-counsel attorney since 1998. She concentrates her practice on title work and real estate matters.  Heather, like Laurie, began her law career as a tax lawyer. Heather  provides ongoing counsel on all legal topics to assist the firm.  She is a Harvard Law School graduate.  Heather works with her husband, MARK JAQUITH, who assists her in title exams.

VICTORIA ELLSWORTH has worked at the firm since 2006.  She is the firm’s paralegal and office administrator.  Aside from being certified paralegal, she uses her significant business experience in many aspects of the law firm’s operation.

PHILIPPINA LOH is the firm’s secretary/administrative assistant, and has made wonderful contributions to the firm since 2001.

VENEZIA VAN DER ZYDE joined our firm in March, 2017 as an administrative assistant.

Although he is not officially part of the firm, MARK ANDERSON, of Tapestry Data Systems has been providing capable computer support for all of us since 1999. He has built most of our computers, and has consulted in other computer and peripheral purchases, and capably and quickly assists us when we’re having computer problems.

We are all very fortunate to have a stable firm with people who each provide significant contributions to the firm. We all work hard, but also enjoy extremely harmonious work relationships with mutual respect and appreciation for each other’s efforts.  Our primary goal is to help clients in a very effective, intelligent and humane way.