Legal Professionals of Hirsch & Ehlenberger
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Brian M. Hirsch


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Practice Areas:

  • Family Law
  • Divorce
  • Separation Agreements
  • Child Custody
  • Child Support
  • Spousal Support/Alimony
  • Property Division
  • Pre/Post-Nuptial Agreements
  • Divorce Mediation


Brian has been a divorce attorney litigating and settling cases in Northern Virginia since 1985 and is certified by the Virginia Supreme Court in Family Mediation. He is listed in "The Best Lawyers in America", Washingtonian magazine's Top Divorce Lawyers, Northern Virginia magazine's Top Divorce Lawyers and Virginia Business magazine's "Legal Elite". Brian was presented with a 2017 Leaders in the Law award by Virginia Lawyer's Weekly for his extensive statewide work and leadership in Virginia family law.

He is the editor of the Virginia Family Law Quarterly, the official publication of the Family Law Section of the Virginia State Bar. Brian is a past Chair of the Virginia State Bar Family Law Section Board of Governors. He has been a Fellow of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers since 2004. He is also a current member of the Virginia Bar Association Family Law Coalition and served on the Virginia State Bar Fifth District Disciplinary Committee.


  • American University, Washington College of Law, Washington, District of Columbia
    • J.D. – 1985
  • Pennsylvania State University
    • B.A., B.A. – 1982
    • Honors: magna cum laude
    • Honors: Phi Beta Kappa National Honor Society
    • Major: Political Science
    • Major: Religious Studies

Bar Admission

  • Virginia, 1985

Published Works

  • Brian M. Hirsch and Daniel V. Poliner, Virginia Family Law Trial Handbook: Pleadings, Evidence and Strategies , Virginia Continuing Legal Ed. Foundation, 2017
  • Brian M. Hirsch, Term Sheet or Bust, Legal and Practical Implications of Term Sheets in Mediation, Virginia Family Law Quarterly, Vol. No. 37, Number 4, 2017
  • Brian M. Hirsch, Unfaithfully Yours: Re-Examining Adultery as a Bar to Spousal Support, Virginia Lawyer, Volume 66, Number 1, 2017
  • Brian M. Hirsch, Settlement or Bust! Ethical Implications of Late Night Settlements, Family Law News, Volume 31, Number 4, 2011
  • Brian M. Hirsch, Just be Quiet, Virginia Lawyer, Volume 59, Number 3, 2010
  • Brian M. Hirsch, Maximizing Your Chances of a Fee Award in a Family Law Case, Family Law News, Volume 30, Number 2, 2010
  • Brian M. Hirsch, Assessing "Manifest Injustice” in Spousal Support Cases: Playing the Blame Game, Virginia Lawyer, Volume 55, Number 7 , 2007
  • Betty A. Thompson and Brian M. Hirsch, A New Tool for the Divorce Lawyer: Using the Attorney Lien to Get Paid, Family Law News, Volume 26, Number 3, 2006
  • Brian M. Hirsch, You Bet Your Spouse’s Life: Examining Virginia's Position on Life Insurance in Divorce, Virginia Lawyer, Volume 53, Number 7, 2005
  • Brian M. Hirsch and William C. Wood, Monitoring Mediation: Identifying and Monitoring Uncertified Mediators in Virginia, Family Law News, Volume 23, Number 3, 2003


  • Fellow, Virginia Law Foundation, 2023
  • Virginia Family Law Section Service Award, 2020
  • Best Lawyers in America
  • Top Divorce Lawyers, Washingtonian Magazine
  • Top Divorce Lawyers, Northern Virginia Magazine
  • Legal Elite, Virginia Business Magazine
  • Leaders in the Law Award, Virginia Lawyer's Weekly, 2017

Seminars Presented

  • “Burdensome” Issues In Equitable Distribution Cases: Determining Burdens and Standards of Proof, Virginia Continuing Legal Ed. Foundation, 2023
  • Practical Advice: Evidence in Family Law Practice, Virginia Continuing Legal Ed. Foundation, 2022
  • Navigating Resist/Refuse Custody Cases, Fairfax Bar Association Annual Conference, 2022
  • Assisting Our Community: Neighborhood Outreach Program Training – Family Law, Northern Virginia Pro Bono Center, 2021
  • Where Should I Bring My Case? Strategic Considerations When There are Jurisdiction Options in Family Law Cases, Fairfax Bar Association, 2020
  • Resist/Refuse Custody Cases: When Children Won’t Go with a Parent, Virginia Continuing Legal Ed. Foundation, 2019
  • Avoiding, Bringing and Defending Rules to Show Cause, Fairfax Bar Association, 2018
  • Mixed Custody Child Support Guidelines, Loudoun Bar Association, 2018
  • Difficult Clients and Counsel in High-Conflict Cases: Being Ethical and Effective , Virginia Continuing Legal Ed. Foundation, 2018
  • The Gray Divorce: Divorcing Later in Life, Virginia Continuing Legal Ed. Foundation, 2017
  • Family Law Legislative and Case Law Update, Fairfax Bar Association, 2016
  • Trial Preparation and Presentation of Child Custody Cases, Northern Virginia Pro Bono Center, 2016
  • Difficult Clients and Counsel in High Conflict Cases: Being Ethical and Effective, Virginia Continuing Legal Ed. Foundation, 2015
  • Navigating the High Conflict Divorce, Virginia Continuing Legal Ed. Foundation, 2014
  • Getting to Yes, Fairfax Bar Association, Alternative Dispute Resolution Section, 2014
  • Everything You Wanted to Know About Child Support , Virginia Trial Lawyers Association, 2013
  • Examining the Trend Toward Shared Custody, Virginia Continuing Legal Ed. Foundation, 2011
  • Divorce, Foreclosure and Bankruptcy, Virginia Continuing Legal Ed. Foundation, 2011
  • Practicing Family Law at the Intersection of Divorce and Religion, Virginia Women Attorneys Assoc. and Fairfax Bar Association, 2010
  • Anatomy of a Spousal Support Hearing, Virginia Trial Lawyers Assoc., 2010
  • Spousal Support Trial Strategies, Fairfax Bar Association, 2009
  • Equitable Distribution in a Recession, Virginia Continuing Legal Ed. Foundation, 2009
  • Evidentiary Issues and Objections in Family Law Cases, Virginia Continuing Legal Ed. Foundation, 2008
  • 23rd Annual Advanced Family Law Seminar, Moderator, Virginia Continuing Legal Ed. Foundation, 2007
  • The Evolving Role of Fault in Virginia (with Patrick McConnell), Virginia Continuing Legal Ed. Foundation, 2006
  • Ethical Concerns in Dealing with Difficult Clients and Opposing Counsel, Virginia Continuing Legal Ed. Foundation, 2005
  • So You Thought You Could Avoid Family Law, Virginia State Bar, 2004
  • Family Law Discovery, Virginia Continuing Legal Ed. Foundation, 2004
  • Managing Equitable Distribution Cases, Half Moon Enterprises, 2003
  • Relocation Custody Cases, Fairfax Bar Association, 2002
  • Division of Stock Options in Divorce, Fairfax Bar Association, 2001
  • Rehabilitative Alimony, Fairfax Bar Association, 2000

Law School Faculty

  • Adjunct Professor, George Mason University, Antonin Scalia Law School
  • Mediation and Alternative Dispute Resolution (Fall 2021 to present)

Professional Associations

  • Virginia State Bar, Family Law Section, Board of Governors, Past Chair
  • Virginia Bar Association, Family Law Coalition
  • Virginia State Bar, Fifth District Disciplinary Committee
  • Fairfax County Circuit Court, Chancery, Commissioner
  • Virginia Bar Association Family Law Coalition
  • Fairfax Bar Association, Family Law Section
  • Loudoun Bar Association

Certified Legal Specialties

  • Family Mediation, Virginia Supreme Court