Established, Respected, Experienced And Tough


I am attorney Riisa Petersen Mandel, founder of the Petersen Law Firm PLLC in Tucson, Arizona. Family law is about personal issues and I believe you deserve a lawyer who will give you personal service.

When you come to my office to discuss your concerns, you will meet with me personally. I have more than a decade of experience, both as a former prosecutor and as a criminal defense and family law attorney in private practice. Your important family issue won’t be passed off to a less experienced “associate” attorney. I will handle your case from beginning to end.

I have dedicated my legal career to protecting the rights of my fellow Arizonans. The justice system can be difficult to navigate alone. I have built a reputation as an advocate based on my experience, determination, grit and an unwavering dedication to YOU, my client.

I attended law school at Tucson’s own James E. Rogers College of Law at the University of Arizona. After graduation, I was immediately hired as a prosecutor in the Pima County Attorney’s office, where I handled DUI and domestic abuse cases. It was there I learned the “prosecutor’s playbook.”

In time, I decided that my true desire was to represent people. I took my knowledge of the “prosecutor’s playbook” and was hired by a prominent Tucson law firm. There I defended the accused using my firsthand knowledge of prosecutorial tactics. I successfully built and managed the family law wing of the firm.

Today, I operate my own law practice based on the respect, experience and reputation that I have earned in Tucson’s legal community. My law office is a small Barrio house near the Pima County courthouse. My philosophy is simple: YOU are my priority. Protecting your best interests is my duty and your right.



James E. Rogers College of Law at the University of Arizona

Experienced Staff

Lisa Ballard comes to Petersen Law Firm with a background in both paralegal work and helping families with end of life care. She has a huge heart and is an extremely hard worker. She will listen to your issues with empathy and understanding. Clients rave about Lisa being not only a great listener but also having a knack for problem solving. She not only greets you with a smile on her face but also answers the phone with a smile which you can hear in her voice. Petersen Law Firm is lucky to have Lisa as it’s right hand woman.


  • Riisa is a very knowledgeable/trustworthy lawyer and has been very responsive and has kept me well informed. Without her expertise during my hearing, i would not have won my child custody case! Keep up the good work Riisa!!

  • I had Riisa Petersen for child custody case, she kept me updated on all events and was good council on what I needed to do, all paper work was sumited and revied in a timely manner. She presented her self in a perfical manner. She also kept after me when I needed to get paper work in on time and helped me in all areas that I needed help in. I would recommend her.

  • I am very pleased with her work.
    Riisa Petersen is tough. My ex wife and her attorney certainly share that opinion. Tough but fair. She negotiated a divorce settlement that was equitable, because she researched the facts of the case and I will be able to pay for my obligations to my ex and the kids and still have a life for myself.

  • I felt very supported and protected by Riisa through a challenging and charged custody process with my ex. I was grateful for Riisa’s empathy in the journey. We got the desired outcome which was a tremendous relief.

  • Divorce is an extremely difficult time to say the least, and having an experienced attorney can make all the difference. Riisa Peterson is not only experienced but amazing at trial. I would highly recommend her for any family law case needed! Not only did she handle my case aggressively but with compassion towards me as her client. Don’t be fooled by gimmicky commercials she is simply the best!

  • “I highly recommend Mrs. Riisa Petersen Mandel from Petersen Lawfirm PLLC in Tucson, AZ. She was able to take on my child custody case after attempting to represent myself in court. She took on my case and immediately was able to help facilitate and agreement between myself and my son’s father and his lawyer. Mrs. Petersen was extremely knowledgeable about custody law and went above and beyond to help me make logical and rational decisions regarding our child. Most importantly, Mrs. Petersen was accessible either via email, phone or in person which in my opinion was the most important factor in my particular case. Every email and phone call was returned promptly in a timely fashion. I felt very protected by her representation in court and also felt she always had the best interest of my child and myself in mind, which helped us come to a very fair agreement in court.”

    Nubia, Tucson, AZ
  • “I worked with Riisa while going through a tough divorce with my wife, unfortunately it had a lot to do with getting equal parenting time for our two girls. Riisa was not only patient and understanding, but also very clear on what was realistic. She was amazing when it came to working after hours to prepare for our trial, and went above and beyond with being there to answer silly questions that I may have had due to my lack of experience and understanding with the process. In trial, Riisa was amazing as well, and helped keep me calm and comfortable during a very emotional experience. Can’t thank her enough!!”

    Tim, Tucson, AZ
  • “Riisa has been involved in my child visitation and custody proceedings for the past several months. I could not be more pleased with here professional demeanor, knowledge, and performance. She has made what is a difficult situation at best, into an opportunity to spend more quality time with my son. I could not recommend her more enthusiastically.”

    Sean, Tucson
  • “Riisa was available for my questions, concerns, and issues at any point that was within reason. She responded to emails, texts, and phone calls in a manner where timely seems like it is underwhelming. She was quick to both act and react. She stayed current and familiar with my case to a degree which made any and all of our interactions quick, efficient, and calming.”

    Leif, Tucson, AZ

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