Jared Spinelli is a product of the times he grew up in. A native of Foxborough, Spinelli graduated from high school in 2003, only months after the U.S. military invaded Iraq in connection to the broadening “war on terror” following the attacks of 9/11.
A number of his friends from high school chose to enlist in the Marine Corps and other branches of the military. Spinelli similarly wanted to serve others, and he quickly set out to find his own path.
He enrolled at Northeastern University and began studying journalism. He worked on the Huntington News student newspaper and interned long hours at The Boston Globe. Spinelli said he enjoyed the work, but that he wanted a deeper connection to those he served. Upon graduation, he enrolled at Suffolk University Law School and quickly found his calling in family law.
“A lot of family law cases come down to a very fundamental thing,” said Spinelli, today a partner at Rubin and Rudman LLP in Boston. “Fairness. They just want to be there for their kids. They want to address financial issues fairly — nothing more, nothing less. Typically, they’re not asking for the moon.”
Spinelli, who’s married and has two young children, has specialized in family law for nearly 10 years. He has also long been lending his professional expertise to Veterans Legal Services as one of the organization’s most active pro bono attorneys.
Spinelli has volunteered to take on a number of VLS family law cases. These have included divorces, child custody, and child support matters, among others.
“The goal is to resolve these cases as quickly and as equitably as possible so that people can move on with their lives,” said Spinelli, noting that a lot of the veterans he serves are around his own age. “In many of the (VLS) child support cases, the client doesn’t have a lot of assets. So, we try to come up with support arrangements that work for everyone. People may be down on their luck, but they still love their kids and want to stay involved in their lives.”
Spinelli regularly speaks about family law issues at educational and professional development programs hosted by the Boston Bar Association and Massachusetts Bar Association. For the current 2021-2022 year, Spinelli is serving as co-chair of the BBA’s Family Law Steering Committee’s Public Service/Pro Bono Subcommittee. And this past January, Spinelli was a panelist on a BBA virtual event addressing family law issues when representing veterans and active servicemembers. He has also served on the executive committee of the Greater Boston Family Law Inn of Court.
For Spinelli, it all comes down to service.
“I’ve always had an interest and respect for those who took that different path by enlisting,” he said. “Volunteering in general has always been important to me. When I became a lawyer, I really wanted to find ways to give back.”
For more information about pro bono opportunities at Veterans Legal Services, please contact Pro Bono Director Angie Vargas at firstname.lastname@example.org.