Chelsey A. Christiansen focuses her legal practice on litigation, family and juvenile law, child custody, divorce, child support, and child advocacy. Ms. Christiansen has experience representing clients in family law matters at the mediation, arbitration, trial and appellate level. She also has experience providing litigation support to commercial clients, including drafting pleadings and representing the interests of commercial clients in small claims court.
Chelsey appeared before the Pennsylvania Supreme Court on April of 2021, and after three months, received the decision she and her client had advocated for throughout the nearly two-year appellate process. Representing “father”, the appellee, she was able to obtain a consistent result – the vacating of a decree terminating father’s parental rights.
Ms. Christiansen appreciates that the nature of litigation, particularly within the context of the family unit, can be overwhelming. This is why she approaches all clients with compassion and empathy, motivated to achieve a satisfactory resolution in an expeditious and cost-effective manner.
Prior to joining High Swartz in 2019, Chelsey completed a judicial clerkship for the Honorable David R. Workman of the Court of Common Pleas of Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. Ms. Christiansen also has experience working for a local public interest organization, as well as a local public defender’s office.
Ms. Christiansen’s dedication to family and child welfare is longstanding and has been fortified by her educational experiences. A graduate of the Thomas R. Kline School of Law at Drexel University, Ms. Christiansen was honored with the Eve Biskind Klothen Law Student Pro Bono Distinction award. During her time at Penn State, Ms. Christiansen co-founded Boulevard, a community service organization committed to donating time and funds to THON.
Some of Chelsey’s noteworthy skills and accomplishments include:
- Navigating juvenile clients and their families through the intake and adjudication processes
- Successfully litigating a child support action and obtaining retroactive child support after proving opposing party shielded income
- Negotiating comprehensive divorce settlements including settlement of all economic and alimony claims
- Representing parents throughout all levels of the custody litigation process and negotiating favorable custody arrangements on behalf of clients
When not practicing law, Ms. Christiansen enjoys traveling and exploring the local community. A Montgomery County native, many of her weekends are spent rooting for the home teams, particularly the Nittany Lions.
Affiliations & Honors
- Pennsylvania Bar Association – Member
- Montgomery Bar Association – Member
- Doris Jonas Freed American Inn of Court, Member, 2019
- Eve Biskind Klothen Law Student Pro Bono Distinction Award
- Marshall Brennan Constitutional Literacy Project Outstanding Student Award
- CALI Excellence for the Future Award/ Best Student Performance in Current Events in Law
- Pennsylvania, 2017
- New Jersey, 2019
- Drexel University, Thomas R. Kline School of Law – Juris Doctor
- Pennsylvania State University – B.S. – Psychology, Minor – Human Development Family Studies
- Judicial Law Clerk for the Honorable David R. Workman – Lancaster, PA Court of Common Pleas, 2017-2019
Chelsey Christiansen's Legal Insights
Shared Custody and School Choice During the Pandemic
Virtual? In-person? Hybrid? What happens when parents cannot agree? As the country continues to struggle with the COVID-19 pandemic, parents with shared custody are faced with difficult choices regarding how their children should attend school. Below is some insight and answers from a child custody attorney as to how best to deal with the decision. […]
2021 Child Tax Credit: Which Divorced Parent Gets It?
Before 2018, listing a dependent child on the federal tax return meant a per person exemption resulting in paying less federal taxes. From 2018 to 2025 the dependency exemption is suspended. For now, the issue of child dependency is still relevant but more complicated. Let’s begin with a scenario: a married couple with two minor […]
I had a great experience working with Chelsey during my divorce. Her understanding of my situation, empathy and attention to detail helped make a very difficult time in my life a little less stressful and move things along as effectively and efficiently as possible. Many thanks, Chelsey, I’m so grateful for everything you did for my case!
Had a great experience working with this firm. Specifically, Chelsey Christiansen. She assisted me with out of state child custody and support litigation and I am extremely pleased with the outcome, not to mention the professionalism she exhibited in both her communications with me, but also those she had with opposing counsel. Highly recommended, 5/5 stars!
I contacted High Swartz to help me navigate the custody issues I was facing with my ex, and I have been so pleased with the services I received. Chelsey Christiansen has been extremely helpful in helping me determine what was best for my child and myself while also remaining realistic. She was determined to have everything settled amicably, and thanks to that attitude my ex and I came to an agreement without having to take things to court. I’m very happy that I had Chelsey in my corner to advocate for what I wanted and what my child needed.
There are so many wonderful things that I can say about this law firm. The staff that I have spoken to when I first reached out, were nothing but professional and helpful in all of my legal matters. I work directly with Chelsey Christiansen and can honestly tell you that she is the best lawyer I could have asked for. She is continuously in contact about all of my concerns and really understands what I am looking for. You can tell that Chelsey really cares about my opinions, listens to all of my concerns, and goes above and beyond to provide the correct course of action for my particular cases. She really goes the extra mile for me and it shows in the relationship we have build over the past year. I trust her completely to help me make the best choices for my family and life. She has made all the difference and I am truly grateful for all of the hard work she has done for me. Thank you Chelsey for helping me and thank you High Swartz for having an amazing staff that is extremely easy to work with. You are the best in the area.
My mother and I worked together with Chelsey Christiansen and Mary Cushing Doherty for her divorce. Both were a pleasure to work with during this stressful time. Having to settle legal matters during lockdown was challenging but we did not feel any gaps in communication. We received fair advice and given realistic expectations.