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Meet Karine Karadjian

Today we’d like to introduce you to Karine Karadjian.

Karine, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I knew I wanted to help people from a very early age, but it wasn’t until high school that I decided that becoming an attorney would be the best way for me to accomplish that goal. All the women on my mother’s side of the family are doctors, and I broke tradition in a way. However, I was fortunate to have parents that encouraged me to follow my own dreams and passions and supported me in all my endeavors. I came to the United States at the age of 11. I picked up English pretty quickly and adapted to my life in L.A. easily.

However, the journey wasn’t as easy for my parents, who left a pretty comfortable life in Armenia behind to be able to provide me and my brother with a better life here. Throughout middle school and high school, I remember watching my parents struggle financially as they tried to rebuild a new life. I remember thinking that I had to do everything in my power to make their sacrifices worth it. I studied diligently. I was valedictorian of my middle school, finished high school with high honors, and got accepted to UCLA. It was one of my proudest moments. After UCLA, I ended up choosing Pepperdine Law because of their great JD/MDR program. I had an interest in not only law but also mediation. It just fit my personality.

During my second year at Pepperdine, I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to extern for two amazing bankruptcy judges, and the rest is history. I fell in love with bankruptcy law, with the ability to help people in financial distress. I worked at a bankruptcy firm for several years and learned from my amazing mentors. In 2015, I started my own law and mediation practice and the rest is history. My job is difficult and emotional because I see people when they are most vulnerable, but my job is also extremely rewarding. The relief on my clients’ faces when I tell them their debt is discharged and they have a fresh start – that’s priceless.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
It hasn’t been a completely smooth road, but I think the challenges along the way have made me stronger and have taught me gratitude. While I was at undergrad and law school, finances were the biggest challenge. I worked the entire time, except the first year of law school, so juggling full-time school and a heavy work schedule was difficult.

The biggest challenge in recent years has been health-related. I left a law firm job and started my own practice in July 2015. In September 2015, I was diagnosed with an auto-immune condition called Sjogren’s Syndrome. I’ve been fighting for the past five years to control it, since having this auto-immune significantly increases the risk of developing other auto-immune such as Lupus. Unfortunately, my bloodwork over the past year has been showing higher and higher markers for Lupus. I think it’s important to discuss this because a lot of other people struggle with my condition or any other physical/mental health conditions, and I want to let them know that it can be manageable and it’s ok to be vulnerable.

I’ve learned that I need to greatly control my stress levels to keep my health in the best condition it can be. Meditation, gratitude, surrounding myself with loved ones, and focusing on all the blessings I have has helped immensely. To me, work-life balance is key to happiness, and being my own boss has allowed me that flexibility.

We’d love to hear more about your business.
My business is two-fold. On the law side, I practice bankruptcy law and debt settlement. I help consumers dealing with financial difficulty. I represent consumers in Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcies, and in cases where bankruptcy does not make sense, I help them settle their debt via non-bankruptcy alternatives. My Instagram handle is “TheDebtFairy” and frankly, at times, the power to make a client’s debt disappear feels magical. On the mediation side, I focus on employment law, business disputes, and personal injury matters. I have thorough knowledge in these fields from years of working with other attorneys on these matters, but litigation does not fit well with my personality, so instead I act as a third-party neutral and help people resolve their dispute through mediation.

Peacemaking is my passion, and I truly enjoy getting settlements done. My years of experience in debt settlement have certainly contributed to my ability to get my mediation cases settled. What I’m most proud of is that everything I do is genuine. What you see is what you get. I do all my own work and you get personalized attention from your attorney start to finish. I truly care about my clients and I will go above and beyond for them.

What were you like growing up?
I was a shy kid. I’ve grown to be more outgoing over the years, but I’d say I’m probably an extroverted introvert on most days. I work best in smaller crowds or settings. As far as interests, those have been pretty steady through the years. I’ve always enjoyed reading and writing, spending time with friends, and baking. Recently I’ve gotten into backgammon.

Pricing:

  • I offer free phone consultations.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Cristina Quinones

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