Ms. Smith-Woertz focuses on family law, primarily handling cases involving divorce, child support, child custody and residency, parenting issues, and paternity. She also prepares wills. Ms. Smith-Woertz serves clients throughout the northeastern quadrant of the state. Ms. Smith-Woertz is a Certified Mediator through the Kansas Office of Judicial Administration and regularly acts as a mediator/conciliator for parties involved in domestic disputes.
Upon graduating from the Washburn University School of Law in 1987, Ms. Smith-Woertz was admitted to practice before the Kansas Supreme Court and all other Kansas courts, as well as before the United States District Court for the District of Kansas and the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit. In 2010, she was admitted to practice before the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation Tribal Court, which handles civil, criminal, Indian Child Welfare matters and juvenile matters for the sovereign nation.
Ms. Smith-Woertz earned her bachelor’s degree in history and psychology from Washburn University in 1983. She earned her juris doctorate from Washburn University School of Law in 1987.
Ms. Smith-Woertz has been in private practice for more than 30 years, including 24 years as a sole practitioner in Topeka. She merged her solo practice of Ardith R. Smith-Woertz, with Joseph, Hollander & Craft in July 2018.
In 1998, Ms. Smith-Woertz was appointed to the Family Law Advisory Committee of the Kansas Supreme Court Judicial Council. In 1987, she earned her qualifications as a Mediator and is on the list of Certified Mediators through the Kansas Office of Judicial Administration. Periodically, Ms. Smith-Woertz is called upon to serve as a Judge Pro Tem in various divisions for Shawnee County’s Third Judicial District.
Ms. Smith-Woertz is an active member of the Topeka Bar Association and served as TBA President from April 2011 through March 2012. She is a Past Chair of the TBA’s Family Law Committee, and continues to serve on that committee, as well as on the TBA’s Bench and Bar Committee, and the Ethics and Grievance Committee. She is a member of the Family Law Section of both the Kansas Bar Association and the American Bar Association.
A life-long advocate for child welfare issues, Ms. Smith-Woertz currently serves on the Board of Directors of CASA of Shawnee County.