Meet Associate Sarah Nelson
Sarah Nelson is an associate at Phillips & Peters, PLLC, with deep roots in Southeast Virginia. Although born elsewhere due to her father’s military service, Sarah’s extended family has always made this area home. After her family’s return to Hampton Roads, Sarah completed her upbringing in Chesapeake and Virginia Beach, ultimately graduating from Grassfield High School as a proud member of the first complete graduating class.
With a focus on her strong ties to Hampton Roads, Sarah pursued her undergraduate education at Old Dominion University, where she earned a double Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice and Sociology. She then continued her academic journey at Regent University School of Law, where she obtained her Juris Doctor degree.
During her time in law school, Sarah actively served in several organizations, including the Regent Law Review, the Trial Advocacy Board, and Honor Counsel. Sarah also passionately worked to allow certified facility dogs to assist child-victims in court. In 2018, due to many efforts of others as well, this cause was ultimately codified into the practice of law in Virginia (see Va. Code § 18.2-67.9:1). Sarah has since shared her research at conferences, educating legal professionals on the effective utilization of dogs in the courtroom.
Since 2019, Sarah has dedicated her legal career to family law in Hampton Roads, specializing in non-parent custody cases, divorce and custody disputes with relocation issues, and same-sex divorce, custody, and support matters. She is a certified Guardian ad litem driven by her unwavering commitment to ensuring the welfare of children in custody proceedings.
With her unique perspective as a child of a military family, Sarah understands the complexities and significance of balancing family/co-parenting and career decisions.
Sarah is a current member of The Virginia State Bar, The Virginia Beach Bar Association, and The Virginia Trial Lawyers Association. She is an alumna member of Alpha Xi Delta and Pi Alpha Delta and a former member of the James Kent Inn of Court. In addition to legal endeavors, Sarah previously served on the Scholarship Committee for Hampton Roads Pride and dedicated her time to coach youth athletics.
When not practicing law, Sarah enjoys quality time with friends, family, and her two dogs. She is an avid enthusiast of Harry Potter and Star Wars. She likes to travel often, enjoys a spontaneous weekend getaway, and loves exploring restaurants when visiting somewhere new.