Cody Smalley


Cody is a Paralegal who supports the attorneys of our firm. Cody brings years of experience as a paralegal to the firm and assists our clients with many important aspects of their cases. From the initial client meeting to the final divorce hearing, Cody will be actively involved in the client’s legal matter by completing a myriad of tasks from assisting clients with the completion of complex financial forms to drafting the final case documents. He is often the first point of contact for the clients and can address many of their concerns and questions if the attorney is not immediately available.

Cody plays a pivotal role in assuring that client’s case is actively moving along towards a positive conclusion. Many clients find Cody to be a calming and confident resource for them while facing a very difficult time in their lives.

Prior to joining Forward Legal Services, Cody worked at a large law firm in Madison in the family law department and his additional experience includes being a firm administrator and paralegal at a general practice law firm in Portage. He has experience in civil litigation at the county and appellate levels and in numerous areas of law.

Cody is a 2010 graduate of UW – Stevens Point with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and German with a minor in Public Administration. He speaks English and German.

Cody grew up in rural Wisconsin and enjoys living in Madison. Cody enjoys playing guitar and spending time with his cats, friends, and family.

Speeches & Presentations

Over 100 presentations to a variety of audiences including lawyers, judges, physicians, social workers, teachers, students, community based organizations, government agencies and the general public. Topics have included high net worth divorces, complex child custody disputes, psychological profiles of parents in child custody evaluations, child support for the self-employed or business owner, the enforceability of marital property agreements, alimony/maintenance with high net income parties; the unique legal issues in same-sex divorces, grandparent visitation rights, and resolving high conflict divorces. A few recent seminars in which Christopher has presented include:

  • Understanding the New Relocation Statute, American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, Madison, October 18, 2019
  • Family Law Update:  Relocation Statute, State Bar Webcast, Madison, April 15, 2019
  • Grandparent and Third-Party Visitation Rights, Wisconsin Judicial Education Seminar, Neenah, March 14, 2019
  • The New Relocation Statute:  When a Parent Wishes to Move Away, Milwaukee Bar Association, Milwaukee, February 25, 2019
  • Staying Current on New Laws Regarding Child Support and Relocation of a Child, Wisconsin Judicial Education Seminar, Lake Geneva, November 1, 2018
  • Gathering and Analyzing Financial Information in Divorce, National Business Institute, April 10, 2018
  • Today’s Diversity and Inclusion Programs: Successes, Ethical Issues and Challenges, State Bar of Wisconsin, December 11, 2017
  • Divorce Law: Handling Relocation Issues, National Business Institute National Teleconference, July 5, 2016
  • “Divorce” for Unmarried Partners, State Bar of Wisconsin Webcast, May 2016
  • Grandparent Visitation Rights, State Bar of Wisconsin Webcast, May 2016
  • Case Law Update: Family Law, State Bar of Wisconsin Webcast, May 2016
  • Wisconsin Child Support & Enforcement Conference, Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin, October 23, 2015
  • Divorce 101: The Basics, Morgan Stanley, Inc., Middleton, Wisconsin, October 13, 2015



  • Since 2014 Best Lawyers in America in the area of Family Law
  • 2017 & 2018 Lawyers of Distinction
  • 2015 Leader in the Law by the Wisconsin Law Journal
  • 2015 Top 10 Attorneys for Client Satisfaction by the American Institute of Family Law Attorneys
  • 2006, 2007 & 2010 Rising Star designation with Law and Politics magazine
  • 2005, 2007 & 2009 Volunteer Attorney of the Year from AIDS Network
  • 2007 Executive Director’s Volunteer of Year Award from AIDS Network
  • 2006 Pro Bono Attorney of the Year, Dane County Bar Association
  • Admission into the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers
  • Fellow – Fellows of Wisconsin Law Foundation
  • Member of the Collaborative Family Law Council of Wisconsin

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