A Law Firm Dedicated to Protecting Your Rights

OVER 40 Years Experience

Peter J. Jankell

  • Partner


Chesapeake, VA




Peter Jankell was born and raised in the Bronx, New York.  He earned his BA degree from Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire and his JD degree, cum laude, from Washington and Lee University School of Law in Lexington, Virginia. While in his second year of law school, Mr. Jankell received a commission as an ensign in the United States Navy through the Navy’s Law Student Program.  Mr. Jankell spent 4 years on active duty with the Navy JAG Corps and was stationed at the Naval Legal Service Office, Great Lakes, Illinois where he served as a defense counsel, claims attorney, and trial counsel. Upon being released from active duty, Mr. Jankell moved to Chesapeake, Virginia where he opened his own law firm concentrating on criminal, domestic, and civil litigation.  That firm is now the Chesapeake law firm of Jankell & Ireland, P.C. Mr. Jankell affiliated with the Navy Reserve JAG Corps shortly after his release from active duty and served in the Reserves until his retirement at the rank of Commander on January 1, 2013. In 2009, Mr. Jankell graduated from the Command and Staff Program at the Naval War College in Newport, Rhode Island.

Peter Jankell represented the prevailing party in Starr v. Starr, 70 Va.App. 486, 828 S.E.2d 257  (Va. App. 2019), the landmark case which changed how Virginia Courts calculate the marital share of military retirement for equitable distribution in divorce cases.

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Areas Of Practice

  • Family Law
  • Criminal Law
  • Civil Litigtion
  • Corporate and Business Law

Litigation Percentage

  • 90% of Practice Devoted to Litigation

Bar Admissions

  • Virginia, 1989
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, 1989
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 4th Circuit, 1989
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces, 1989


  • Washington and Lee University School of Law, Lexington, Virginia
    • J.D. - 1989
    • Honors: cum laude
  • Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire
    • A.B. - 1986
    • Major: Government/Sociology
  • United States Naval War College


    • Joint Services Family Law Symposium, Naval Legal Service Office, Mid-Atlantic, 2007 to 2012

    Professional Associations And Memberships

    • Virginia State Bar, Military Law Section, Chair, 2018 - 2019, Immediate Past Chair, 2019 - 2020
    • Virginia State Bar, Military Law Section, Board of Governors, 2013 - 2018
    • Virginia State Bar, Family Law Section, Member, 1998 - Present
    • Chesapeake Bar Association, Member, 1993 - Present
    • Virginia Beach Bar Association, Member, 2013 - Present