Christine Ann Soto, a Partner and Co-Chair of the firm’s Education Law Practice, focuses her practice exclusively on education and school law matters.
With almost 20 years of experience in education law, Christine works to ensure that the voices of New Jersey’s students are heard and that their educational rights are protected. As a result of her passion and experience, Christine was chosen as one of New Jersey’s Best Lawyers for Families –Education Law.
As a seasoned education lawyer, Christine counsels her clients on all aspects of special education compliance. She also handles mediations and litigation at the state and federal level. She serves as the board attorney to Boards of Education throughout the State of New Jersey, counseling on a host of general education, and board governance issues. Christine gives presentations to school boards, the school community, the legal community, and parents on various education law topics.
Prior to joining the firm, Christine was the Executive Legal Affairs Officer of the New Jersey Department of Education. As a member of the Commissioner of Education’s Executive Leadership Team, she provided direct legal support and guidance to the Commissioner, Chief of Staff, as well as the various offices within the Department in coordination with the Attorney General’s Office. Christine also supervised the Office of Controversies & Disputes, the Office of School Ethics, and the Equal Employment Opportunity/Affirmative Action Officer. Christine also served as the Acting Director of the Office of Fiscal Accountability and Compliance.
Through her experience at the NJDOE, Christine gained a firsthand understanding of how the state works. This gives her clients a unique insight to how to approach an issue and where to find guidance and information at the state level.
Before joining the NJDOE, Christine worked in private practice including running her own full-service education law firm representing students, particularly those with special needs. After years of working with families, Christine knows how parents may perceive certain situations and is able to offer out of the box solutions to her board clients.
When it comes to client service, Christine’s philosophy is to provide first rate, quality legal counseling in an efficient and supportive way. She believes that communication is key to the client relationship. Therefore, she has a rule to return client calls within 24 hours and keeps clients informed during the course of all legal matters. She defines success when her clients make the best-informed decisions after having a full understanding of the issues and available options. Her clients laud her passion, fairness and integrity.
Christine’s professional interest and expertise has been a natural outgrowth of her personal experience as the parent of a child with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Passionate about advocacy and community, she has previously been a member of the Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates (COPAA), the New Jersey Special Education Practitioners and involved in such organizations as Autism New Jersey and Asperger/Autism Spectrum Education Network (ASPEN). In 2019, Christine joined the Advisory Board of NJ LEEP (Law and Education Empowerment Project) which is a college access and success program serving students and families in the greater Newark, New Jersey area.
As a board attorney, Christine is an active member of the New Jersey State Bar Association’s School Law Committee as well as a member of the National School Boards Association’s Council of School Attorneys.
Christine is bilingual and a proud member of the Hispanic Bar Association of New Jersey, where she served as a panelist at the 2016 Women’s Empowerment Leadership and Law Conference and as a mentor within the American Dream Pipeline Program, exposing students from urban communities to the legal profession.
Our offices are strategically located throughout New Jersey, Pennsylvania and New York.