Personal Legal Services

Estate Planning, Trusts and Estates, Wills and Probate Law

Stanley, Lande & Hunter lawyers represent individuals and families regarding the preservation, management, and transfer of wealth.

  • We also regularly advise individual and corporate fiduciaries in connection with the administration of large and complex estates and trusts.
  • Our practice includes the organization of public and private charitable and nonprofit institutions and providing counsel for these organizations on tax and corporate compliance issues.
  • Our clients include successful business owners and their families, investors, and highly-compensated business people and professionals. We use our experience in the estate, gift, generation-skipping, and income tax areas to create and implement comprehensive estate and business succession plans to fit our client's individual situation.
  • We ensure that our planning process reflects not only the goal of minimizing the effect of taxes, but also the goal of maintaining flexibility to provide for future events that clients may not foresee to address changing family circumstances and investment climates.
  • We assist our clients in achieving privacy and avoiding administrative costs with the use of living or Revocable Trusts.
  • Our estate planning counsel includes use of a variety of wills, Durable Powers of Attorney, Living Wills, and Medical Powers of Attorney.
  • Our probate administration practice includes not only estates of decedents but also such matters as guardianships, conservatorships, trusts, and other tax planning alternatives. See The Truth About Iowa Probate.

Real Estate Law

We regularly represent sellers and buyers in preparation and negotiation of purchase and sale documents, conditional sale agreements, mortgages, deeds of trusts, easements, commercial leases, documents concerning environmental conditions, warranties and indemnities, farm management agreements, escrow agreements, license agreements, and other documents. See Real Estate Transactions in Iowa.

Our lawyers and trained legal assistants provide our clients with a wide range of services in our real estate practice:

Our corporate and industrial clients have used our services for acquisition and disposition of real estate throughout Iowa and in many other states. These services have included stand-alone transactions, as well as corporate acquisitions and dispositions, construction projects, professional offices, and retail centers. Our professionals use a complete substantive system for handling the sale and purchase of residential real estate.

We represent both lenders and borrowers in a wide variety of financing situations. We are qualified loan closing attorneys for the Farmers Home Administration, FHA, and VA loans. We serve as closing agents for several different mortgage lenders.

Several of our lawyers have extensive experience in city and county zoning matters, including contested rezoning projects, special permits, and variances. We successfully represented IPSCO Steel Inc. in acquiring 2,200 acres of marginal agricultural land and rezoning it to heavy industrial zoning, and we successfully defeated an attack on the rezoning in the Iowa District Court.

Our clients include developers of major residential subdivisions and residential condominium projects, as well as smaller commercial condominiums. In these projects, we have worked with builders and engineers in the acquisition, zoning, planning, and subdividing of the developments. Our clients also include several homeowner and condominium associations. We have represented a major city and currently represent several smaller Iowa cities and, thus, have addressed development issues from the municipality's perspective as well.

We have successfully represented property owners whose land has been acquired by the Iowa Department of Transportation by eminent domain.

  • We have successfully represented clients on tax protests for residential, commercial, and industrial real estate.

Environmental Law

Our lawyers have represented both personal and corporate clients in a wide range of environmental issues.

We advise clients regarding liability relating to underground storage tanks and have dealt with the Iowa Underground Storage Tank Fund Board regarding claims for reimbursement of expenses for cleanup costs.

We advise clients regarding potential liability under the federal Comprehensive Environmental Response Conservation and Liability Act ("Superfund") and have been involved in major litigation regarding Superfund liability.

  • We have represented clients in disputes before the Iowa Department of Natural Resources relating to cleanup obligations for contaminated real estate.
  • We have been involved in major litigation regarding the liability of insurance companies for payment of environmental clean-up costs.

Taxation

Stanley, Lande & Hunter lawyers regularly represent clients in connection with all aspects of taxation, including individual and all types of business income taxation; estate and gift taxes; business, employment, and sales taxes; and nonprofit and tax-exempt organization taxation. Because all three of our tax lawyers are also Certified Public Accountants, we are particularly well-suited to assist our clients with taxation issues:

Our tax lawyers regularly advise our clients on all areas of individual and business income taxation. We provide consulting services to help minimize the income tax burden for our clients and also represent them before the various administrative levels of the Internal Revenue Service and state agencies. To maintain our level of expertise, we prepare a large number of individual and business income tax returns each year.

We help reduce the burden of the federal estate and gift tax system on our individual clients. We provide estate planning services that extend far beyond basic will and trust drafting.

State and local governments are increasingly relying on sales taxes. As sales tax rates continue to increase, we advise our clients on the impact of sales taxes and how to structure their businesses and transactions to reduce that impact.

We regularly organize new public and private charitable and nonprofit organizations and advise established organization on how best to maintain exempt status. Our clients include large operating and private foundations as well as many local charities.