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Thank you for serving our country.  As an enlisted Marine from 1991-1995, I sincerely believe that you and your family deserve the utmost respect and gratitude from your government and fellow citizens.   Depending on your situation and nature of discharge, you and your family may be entitled to medical and financial benefits from the U.S. Dept. of Veterans Affairs ("DVA").
The DVA is required to assist veterans  with their claims, but the process can be confusing, time consuming and frustrating.   You should also know that you may be able to get assistance with your veterans benefit claims through organizations such as the American Legion, VFW, Paralized Veterans of America and other local government programs.  These organizations can be extremely valuable in assisting with your benefits claims and will usually do so at no charge. 
Veterans Service Organizations ("VSO"),  Claims Representatives and lawyers who assist veterans with their claims at  the DVA must have an accreditation by the DVA Office of General Counsel.  You may search for accredited attorneys, VSO's and Claims representatives online at: http://www.va.gov/ogc/apps/accreditation/index.asp
Attorneys, VSOs and Claims representatives who represent veterans must also file with the relevant VA office a signed representation form called a Form VA 21-22 or VA 21-22a indicating that the veteran has agreed to representation by the specified attorney, VSO or claims representative.  Attorneys also have limitations on when and what they may charge a veteran for legal representation before the DVA and must also file a signed fee agreement pursuant to those limitations with the relevant VA office.  For more information about the DVA's requirements regarding individual or VSO representation of veterans, visit the following link:   http://www.va.gov/ogc/accreditation.asp. 
If you believe that your situation with the DVA warrants representation by an attorney, please feel free to contact me so we can schedule a time to discuss your matter over the phone or in person. 
Furthermore, if you need assistance with a non-DVA issue, such as starting a business, responding to or filing a complaint, or are in need of other legal assistance, I will gladly provide a free consultation and will provide any fee-paid services at a discounted rate.



Owning your own business is the "American Dream" but it isn't easy.  Planning, initiating and maintaining your own business to ensure that you are in compliance with any state and federal regulatory compliance rules and laws can be an intimidating task.  Much of the work you can do yourself, but you may find that the time and resources it takes to research the needs of your business takes valuable time away from your business, reducing your opportunity to profit and succeed.  You may also find that some of the regulations and laws that may apply to your business requires a legal interpretation so that you have a better understanding of what you need to run your business within the boundaries of the law.  
It is also important that the business relationships you enter into with vendors and consumers are fair and protect your business and your personal assets in the best way possible.  Proper contract formation will help ensure that you and your business has the best opportunity for success.  
You may also want to form a non-profit corporation to help a group of people or provide a special service to someone.  Coming up with a great idea to help others is always a great thing, but understanding the rules to forming a non-profit,  tax exempt entity under 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, carries with it a multitude of rules and obligations even before making the filing with the IRS and the state.  If you are planning to form a non-profit organization and need assistance, I would be happy to discuss your plans and assist you in the process.
If you have questions about corporate and non-profit formation, state and federal compliance issues, and contract formation and negotiation, feel free to contact me to schedule a time to discuss your questions, plans or concerns. 


Face it, the last person anyone really wants to hire is an attorney.   Sometimes, however, it is unavoidable.  
Whether you have been forced into a civil or criminal legal matter, or believe you may be forced into such a situation, the thought of having to navigate through the legal system by yourself or with an attorney can be extremely stressful, costly and time consuming.  Even planning a will and/or trust for your loved ones can be a difficult task that may require a sophisticated understanding of the relevant statutes and case law to ensure that your intentions are met.  No matter what situation you are in, it is important that your matter remain as confidential as possible, and that you are provided an honest assessment of your situation and the options you have an addressing your needs. 
I understand these can be difficult situations from a personal and financial standpoint, and I will treat you with professionalism and dignity in discussing your legal options from the time we meet for a consultation through any during and after our relationship--whether you hire me to represent you or not.   I am committed to keeping your matter private, and being up-front about your options, my ability to fairly represent you,  the fees you will be charged, and work product at all times.  
If you need an attorney, or think you need an attorney, please feel free to contact me to discuss your issue so we can discuss your options and the best way to get you the help you need from me or anyone else.



This country is facing some incredible opportunities in terms of energy policy and environmental responsibility.  Many of our leaders are emphasizing and encouraging energy practices that involve clean energy options for utility providers and users.   Using a mix of renewable and clean energy options is not a bad idea, but implementation of these ideas must make sense to the consumers and the providers, and proper legislation, rulemaking and ratemaking is key to a successful state and federal energy policy. 
The shift in energy policy also provides great opportunities for clean technology development and coordination with utility companies and large users of electricity, such and industrial companies and of course, the largest single user of energy in the country--the Department of Defense.  The federal government has required that the DoD produce or procure not less than 25% of the total quantity of facility energy it consumes within its facilities during fiscal year 2025 and each fiscal year thereafter from renewable energy sources.
Notwithstanding the DoD’s overall requirements, each of the military departments have set even more aggressive renewable energy goals.  For example, Secretary of the Navy, Hon. Ray Mabus has continuously promoted and advanced aggressive energy goals for the Navy and Marine Corps, including: 1) requiring that evaluation of energy factors be mandatory when awarding contracts for systems and buildings; 2) demonstration of a Green Strike Group in local operations by 2012 and sail it by 2016; 3) petroleum use in the commercial vehicle fleet by 50% by the year 2015; 4) produce at least 50% of shore-based energy requirements from alternative sources, with at least 50% of Dept. of Navy installations being net-zero; and 5) achieving 50% of total Department of Navy energy consumption will come from alternative sources by 2020.  In addition, the U.S. Army Energy Initiatives Task Force states that the U.S. Army has a goal to meet of 25% renewable energy by 2025 , and the Air Force states that it is on target to generate 1 gigawatt of renewable energy by 2016, expecting to have enough renewable energy to supply 25% of all installation electricity use by 2025.
These aggressive goals offer valuable opportunities for renewable energy and clean technology developers to be key contributors in the DoD's efforts.  However, many of these goals and requirements are hindered by a mismatch in government contracting guidelines and financing terms for larger scale renewable energy development.  Consequently, much work needs to be done with respect to our state's and nation's energy policies if the sentiments to increase renewable energy use in the United States is going to be meaningful. 
In any event, the incorporation of renewable generation for any class of customer will impact the reliability of the bulk electric system and the rates consumers pay for their energy.   In over ten years of practicing energy and utilities law at the state and federal levels, advising energy providers, large industrial users, litigating rate cases, and participating in the rulemaking processes, I know that this is an extremely important issue for all businesses, and that proper legislation, rulemaking and regulation is essential to a good energy policy.  
If you are a business can contribute the DoD's aggressive energy goals and requirements, or if you have a business that needs assistance before the regulatory agencies with respect to energy and utilities matters, please feel free to contact me to discuss whatever issues and options you may have in resolving your issues and achieving your company's goals.


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