Victoria Danilchenko

Victoria Danilchenko

Lawyer, Chairman of Pavel Astakhov law office, Lecturer at the Department of Advocacy of The International Law Faculty at Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO), TV presenter of the program “For Minors' Affairs” on the TV channel “Domashny” | Russia

For almost my entire life, I wanted to become a lawyer.

Ask any entrepreneur or successful tycoon how did they managed to succeed, and they will surely tell you that they were able to achieve what they have, only through hard working. No magic, just a lot of work. And my whole life and work is connected with the advocacy. Many people have a lack of trust to women working in advocacy. This is especially true for young girls who are only opening their careers.

As a second year student, I got a job at the Chamber of Lawyers №6 at Kuznetsky Most, in which such well-known masters as Genrikh Padva, Alexander Gofshtein, Pavel Astakhov, Felix Heyfets and etc used to work.

And while working there, step by step, I had to convince my colleagues that I was a true professional and could be trusted. In addition to my knowledge, skills and accumulated experience, it was patience and the ability to not pay attention to mistrust and personal offenses that allowed me to "grow" to the present heights in my career.

In such conditions, sometimes you have to work with doubled or even tripled energy. After all, when opening your career, it is extremely important to demonstrate your competence, to prove in practice that you have willpower, result orientation, endurance, logic and acumen. Plus, an advocacy is associated with a huge emotional strain. Therefore, you have to achieve success, withstanding the great tension. Not forgetting that you are not only a professional, but also a mother, a daughter, a wife, etc.

More than 25 years in advocacy.

I have graduated from the Law Faculty of Moscow State University. I opened my career in Chamber of Lawyers №6 at Kuznetsky Most. In 2007, I started working in Kheifetz and Partners law office. Since 2010, I am the Chairman of Pavel Astakhov law office.

To date, I held more than three hundred briefs, most of which were unconditionally won.

Since 2010, I am the TV presenter of the program “For Minors' Affairs” on the TV channel “Domashny”.

I also work as a lecturer at the Department of Advocacy of The International Law Faculty at Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO).

Career highlights

I managed to save 4 families from divorcing. That is, people came to me with a request to help them get a divorce, and after several consultations and mediations, they reconciled and made a decision to save their family. And these achievements are more important to me than any victory in court. In my profession, I found a unique niche, cases in which, without false modesty, I have no equals.

In my practice I have a lot of cases related to determining the place of residence of children. There is a long-standing practice in Russia that children should live with their mothers. And, only in extreme situation, with fathers, if the mother is straightforwardly an asocial element for instance.

I mean a situation when father is not driven by the fact that “I am cool, strong, I have more money”, but sincere cares for his child. And at the same time the mother of this child doesn’t spend her time with him. But the court says: “Mom is not a drug addict, not mentally ill, give her a child and give her back” - this is terrible.

So I decided that in such cases I will represent father’s side.

And after a certain time, I became very famous lawyer among fathers. It was really difficult for me and at the same time very interesting, because you have to think a lot, how to build a case, how to make the court believe you, how to show a father from his best side. There is something to work on. It's easier with moms …

Visit a website of any law firm – the number of men listed as partners is always bigger than the number of women. And the requirements for women are usually more stringent. Therefore, so far, unfortunately, it is more difficult for women to get success in our profession than for men. Speaking about women in my profession I cannot deny that there are gender barriers associated with maternity leave and parenting, both in hiring and in terms of further promotions. If we talk about myself, at the moment I am combining work in a law office, training of young lawyers, participation in television programs, and different public activities. My schedule is colossally busy.

Despite all these, I manage to maintain a balance between work and family. You ask how?

First of all, it is self-discipline, without which nothing can be done. Pre-planned schedule does not allow to take a step aside. Of course, I exaggerate a little, but in general, I try to stick to a tight schedule.

Being a good lawyer, I remain a good mother for an already fully grown daughter - a graduate of MGIMO. I have time to talk with her, chat with her friends. I always find time to meet friends, go to the theater, cinema. It seems to me that the love for work and family is very well combined, if you are self-disciplined and plan your working day, life, pleasure in advance. In our country, and in the globe, female influence is growing. Women have a good PR campaign of themselves and succeed in it.

I believe that we must fight primarily with the legal illiteracy in our society, which is present in various areas of our life: business, family relations, etc. At the state level, various programs should be developed, and my colleagues and I will be happy to support them and share our expertise. Legal illiteracy is a scourge of our society, which entails many problems for women both in business and in family life. It is important that women not only know their rights, but also know how to protect them.