Areas of Practice

 

Estate planning

What happens to what you own when you die?  This is an important and surprisingly complicated question that an experienced attorney can help you answer.  We will talk about how your assets are owned, how to minimize the difficulty and expense of transferring assets to your loved ones when you pass away, and ways to address your specific concerns.

 

probate and trust administration

When a loved one passes away, it can be a confusing time.  What happens next?  Probate and trust administration is the legal process that determines what happens to the property of a deceased person.  It is important to follow certain steps in the process to protect your loved one's family and to carry out their wishes.  An experienced attorney can help you walk through this process and to avoid pitfalls.

 

Agriculture Law

Farms are businesses, but they're so much more than that.  Farms are subject to many laws and regulations other businesses do not fall under.  Farmers may also organize as or do business with farmer cooperatives, which are unlike most other businesses.  Working with a lawyer who understands the unique laws governing agriculture is helpful whenever a farm business is engaging in a new transaction, forming a partnership, has questions about farm programs, or needs advice on how to handle problems as they come up.

 

Elder law

Do you know what you will do if you become disabled due to age or disease?  Who will manage your finances?  Who will make healthcare decisions for you?  How will you afford the cost of long-term care?  Elder law is a multi-disciplinary legal approach to answering these and other questions related to aging and dying.

 

guardianships

When a friend or family member experiences profound and lasting disability, sometimes a guardian or conservator must be appointed to make sure that person is properly cared for.  An attorney can help you create a guardianship or conservatorship or answer questions about what happens when someone else has petitioned to begin this process.

 

Food Law

Interested in starting or growing a food business?  Have an idea for a food that you want to market but you're not sure where to start?  The food and beverage industry is huge and growing, and so are the regulations governing foods sold to the public.  Consult an attorney with experience in the complexities of food law to make sure your product is safe and is not in violation of any federal or state laws.

 

farm succession planning

Farm owners face special problems when it comes to transitioning the farm to the next generation.  Whether you have a farming heir in mind or whether you're struggling to find the right person to carry on your legacy, it is important to begin thinking about what will happen to the farm when you're gone.  

 

teaching and community education

Whether in a formal classroom or a church basement, I enjoy sharing my knowledge and expertise in elder law and agriculture law.  I regularly give presentations to groups of professional caregivers, family members, and students on these topics.

 

Food justice

What is "food justice?"  Food justice seeks fairness, equity, and dignity for all actors and participants in the food system by embracing and advancing a human right to food that is safe, nutritious, culturally-appropriate, and self-determined; and by acknowledging the histories and systems of oppression on the basis of race, gender, class and all other categories of oppression, food justice seeks to dismantle such systems and replace them with systems that advance the dignity and autonomy of all communities and individuals within the food system and with regard to the production and provisioning of food.  As an attorney with policy experience in this area, I can provide research and advice on programs to advance food justice for community groups, government, businesses, nonprofits, and schools.