Raising the Bar

How has your practice evolved from when you started out?

How hasn’t it!? When I left law school, pot was widely illegal and now I deal with marijuana (professionally) every week. So there’s that. I’ve also reached a sweet spot where most of my time is spent dealing with public policy issues ranging from very public disputes over the role of hydropower in Maine to unconstitutional marijuana laws around the country. It’s an exciting way to be a lawyer, is political to the right degree, and lets me wrestle with some fairly novel (and, depending who you ask, boring) legal issues, which I dig!

What skills, talents, or methods do you think help you excel in this field?

Being practical, admitting what I don’t know, leaning on people who do know, and trying to be friendly with everyone. Many of the problems I’ve solved for clients come from my close relationships with people in state government, relationships that I’ve worked hard to build and keep.

Where are you most active or visible within your practice area? Is there a specific niche you’re known for? 

In academic parlance: administrative law. For real people: suing the government, working with the government, or both.

How would your clients describe you? 

To the point.

What do you like best about your practice area?

The intersection of law and politics is a comfortable place to hang out. Dealing with public policy issues and disagreements with the state requires creativity and depends equally on relationships and legal argument. Sometimes you can work it out, sometimes you just need to sue somebody, and most of the time there’s a middle ground. Finding that happy medium is fun.

How do you start your day? 

Usually I put a pillow over my head and hide, hoping my young boys don’t notice me so I can sleep for 5 more minutes. More often than not this backfires because they jump on me, pointy kid limbs and all, until I give up and get up. Then I drink coffee, then more coffee. After the struggle known as trying to dress my 3 year old, I take them to school and am usually forced to listen to a podcast of short nonsensical children’s stories on the way. In all truth, it’s a delightful way to start the day.

When you’re able to sneak in a break during the day, where could you be found? 

Mountain biking in the summer, often training for one ultra-race or another, or ice climbing in the winter.

When it comes to reviewing your own peers, what criteria are important? What makes an attorney stand out?

Humility, self-reflection and a lack of pretense all help.  Really the same traits that make for a solid person in general make for a kind, and usually good, lawyer.

Firm Highlights

Publication

H-2B Temporary Visas: Additional 35,000 Coming in Second Half of FY 2022

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Department of Labor (DOL) recently announced the forthcoming publication of a joint temporary final rule to make available an additional 35,000 H-2B temporary nonagricultural worker visas...

Publication

Changes Affecting Employment Authorization for L-2, E, and H-4 Dependent Spouses

On November 12, 2021, USCIS announced that L-2 and E dependent spouses are no longer required to apply for an EAD to work in the United States. Instead, L-2 and E dependent spouses are...

News

Benchmark Litigation Names Preti Flaherty 2022 “Maine Firm of the Year”

Benchmark Litigation has named Preti Flaherty as 2022 Litigation Firm of the Year in the State of Maine. The Benchmark Awards honor distinguished litigators and law firms in all 50 states and 10 practice...

News

Preti Flaherty Files Human Trafficking and Forced Labor Lawsuit Against Church of Scientology

Preti Flaherty attorneys Greg Hansel, Shana Solomon, Ellie Quinby, and Katherine Oaks filed a human trafficking and forced labor lawsuit against the Church of Scientology on behalf of three plaintiffs claiming decades of forced...

Press Coverage

From Maine to Kushan: Teaching the U.S. Legal System in China

Preti Flaherty attorney Jeff Thaler was recently the subject of an essay written by one of his former students at Duke Kushan University (DKU). In 2019, Jeff spent time at DKU serving as a...

Publication

What Are My Options If My H-1B Registration Was Not Selected?

The H-1B nonimmigrant visa category allows employers to sponsor foreign nationals performing work in a “specialty occupation.” This typically requires an offer of employment in a job requiring at least a U.S. bachelor’s degree...

Press Coverage

More Reminders of the Shortcomings of Maine’s Freedom of Access Law

As part of an editorial marking Sunshine Week , the annual celebration started by the American Society of News Editors to recognize the importance of open government, Preti Flaherty attorney Sig Schutz is quoted by the  Bangor...

News

Attorney Crystal L. Bulges Joins Preti Flaherty’s Environmental Practice Group

Preti Flaherty is pleased to announce that attorney Crystal L. Bulges has joined the firm’s Environmental Practice Group, working in the Portland office. Crystal brings to the firm more than 20 years of experience...

News

Preti Flaherty Attorney Tim Bryant Selected by Franchise Times as “Legal Eagle”

For the fourteenth consecutive year, Preti Flaherty attorney Tim Bryant has been recognized as a Franchise Times magazine “Legal Eagle.” Nominated by their peers, franchise attorneys chosen for this honor are considered among the...

Publication

35,000 Additional H-2B Visas Now Available for the Second Half of Fiscal Year

On May 18, 2022, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Department of Labor (DOL) issued a temporary rule authorizing the issuance of additional 35,000 H-2B visas for the second half of Fiscal...