Full Time Practice

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Meet Jennifer Daniel Kahl

Jennifer Daniel Kahl is from Newport News, Virginia and is practicing elder law.  This includes estate planning, long term care planning, Medicaid, Veterans Benefit Aid & Attendance, guardianships and conservatorships for incapacitated adults, estate and trust administration, and probate.

She got her associate degree from Utah State University - Uintah Basin and transferred to Brigham Young University to get he Bachelors in Political Science. Her law degree is from William & Mary Law School. She is a 2015 grad and has worked at The Heritage Law Group since that time. It is a small firm with 5 attorneys.

When asked, “What do you enjoy most about what you do?” She responded, “I get so much satisfaction from my job! I call elder law "nice law" because it is usually non-adversarial. Most days, everyone leaves my office feeling happy. I do not litigate, so there are never any "losers." I feel that I make a positive difference for my clients.”  She added, “I also love my firm. It is a small firm that places emphasis on allowing employees to enjoy a good quality of life. Many of the attorneys and staff members are parents of young children, and everyone is extremely accommodating to their family needs. I leave the office at 4:00 most days. I think this is fairly unusual and I feel very lucky to be in such family-centered environment.” 

We often like to ask, “Has your path in law differed from your original expectations?”  And Jennifer’s response is one so many appreciate.  She said, “Yes! I went to BYU expecting that I would meet a husband, finish my Bachelors degree, and then have children and be a stay-at-home mom. After all, this is what all my friends did. However, I did not get married while at BYU. After I finished my degree, I served an LDS mission. When I came back, I moved to Virginia for law school.”

 “By that point, I assumed that marriage and family were a long way off for me. Though I wanted to get married, I did not think that it was going happen anytime soon. I figured that if it hadn't happened during my many years in Utah, it wasn't about to happen anywhere else. This reasoning was one of the motivations that pushed me to law school. If I wasn't going to be a wife and mother, I wanted to find something else meaningful to do with my life. So, I put my family plans on the back-burner and began to focus on a law degree. After all, I could only do these things one at a time, right? The last thing I wanted to do was juggle a law career and a family at the same time.”

 “But life never goes as planned, does it? I went to church the first Sunday after moving to Virginia and ran straight into my future husband. We got married in the middle of my second year of law school. We had a baby a year after I graduated. My baby is now 7 months old and I still work full-time. This is certainly not how I planned things to happen!  No, this is not what I planned -- it is even better! My life is very busy, but I love it and I am amazed at how God gives me the capacity to handle it all. I wouldn't change it for anything.” 

Which obviously leads to the question, “How do you juggle your personal and professional life?”  Jennifer has found her way to juggle things “with a great babysitter and a very understanding boss! I couldn't do it without them! When I was looking for a job during my last year of law school, I knew that my husband and I were planning to have children soon. Because of this, I specifically sought out firms that I suspected would be family-friendly. I sacrificed a higher salary to go to a small firm that would support my family goals. I don't regret that decision for a minute!”

Jennifer’s advice to other women either interested or already working in the law is this:

1. Take out as little student debt as possible. Nothing will limit your options like having a big monthly payment hanging over your head. If you want to keep the option of staying home with your kids, you need to minimize your debt.

2. Be willing to sacrifice a fatter paycheck for a family-friendly workplace. There are family-friendly options out there, but you really have to hunt them out. Don't be discouraged if the pay is less than what your classmates are getting. If you want to have a family, it is worth it.

3. Don't get down on yourself if you are the only mom in the ward not attending the group play dates. You are on a different path than they are, and that is okay. You don't need to feel guilty about it (or look down on others for it).

Thank you Jennifer for letting us spotlight you and we look forward to networking with you in the future on-line and in person.   We wish you the best on your dreams of enlarging your family, cutting back to part-time and then increasing work load as best suited for your family.  Congrats on finding both the place and area of law best suited to you and sharing these options with others that may have similar questions.  

Monday, March 13, 2017

Today's Webinar - Planning with Flexibility

Please join us at 1pm MST today:  (additional information located on 3/4/2017 blog)  

Register: Http://Tinyurl.Com/Planningflexibility  

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Youth Leadership Camp

The Civics, Law, & Leadership Camp will be held July 31-August 4, 2017 at BYU Law School.  The camp is supported by the Federal Bar Association and is a hands-on, highly interactive learning experience designed to help high school students develop leadership skills, work personally with judges, lawyers, and law professors, engage in realistic and interactive trials, appeals, and jury deliberations, build friendships, and more.  Additional information including registering online

Sunday, March 5, 2017

Webinar Link

Did you miss it?  That's ok.  Here is the link to the BYU Women in Business and Women in Law February webinar - How to turn your skill into a business opportunity.

Jeanette Bennett. To view the webinar, go to https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/recording/972677844697512707

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Webinar - Planning with Flexibility

Please join us for another Women in Business and Women in Law Webinar 

March 13  

Register: http://Tinyurl.Com/Planningflexibility

Friday, February 24, 2017

Stanford student chapter event - Women at the Supreme Court

            On February 4th, the Stanford Law School student chapter hosted an event titled “Women at the Supreme Court,” featuring three L.D.S. women who had clerked for Supreme Court justices.  Judge Denise Lindberg, Professor RonNell Andersen Jones, and Professor Lisa Grow Sun spoke to an audience of law students and members of the local L.D.S. community. They covered topics such as the daily work of a Supreme Court clerk, the diversity of faiths among the clerks, and advice for young women considering professional careers. Judge Lindberg, also a member of the Young Women General Board, emphasized that young women should be open-minded about their options and not pressured to fit a “cookie cutter” mold.

            Both professors shared stories about their decisions not to work on Sundays. “Justice O’Connor didn’t care as long as I got the work done,” Professor Jones said. In Professor Sun’s interview with Justice Kennedy, the justice set the standard from the outset. Knowing she was L.D.S., he told her he assumed she wouldn’t be working on Sundays. “I didn’t have much choice after that,” Professor Sun said, wryly.

 People in photo (left to right): Paige Muhlestein (President of the Stanford student chapter), Judge Denise Lindberg, Professor RonNell Andersen Jones, Professor Lisa Grow Sun, Jordan Smith (Vice President).

Sister Renlund Addresses Law Society Members on Lessons for Law and for Life at the JRCLS Annual Fireside

NOTE: This is a re-print from an article by Megan J. Nelson that was originally posted on January 27, 2017 in the J. Reuben Clark Newsletter:

Numerous attorneys, students, and friends of the Law Society gathered at the LDS Conference Center on January 20, 2017 in Salt Lake City, Utah for the J. Reuben Clark Law Society Annual Fireside. Among those in attendance were retired Senator Harry Reid, who received the Law Society’s Distinguished Service Award, and his wife, Mrs. Landra Reid. Sister Ruth Lybbert Renlund and her husband, Elder Dale G. Renlund of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter
Ginny Isaacson awarded plaque
of recognition to Mary Hoagland

 -day Saints,  also were in attendance. Sister Renlund received the Law Society’s Exemplary Leadership Award and presented the keynote address. Mary Hoagland, Former Executive Director to the Law Society, also received a plaque in honor of her fifteen years of service to the Law Society.

Sister Renlund practiced law in Salt Lake City for over twenty years and is the former president of the law firm Dewsnup, King, and Olsen. She has served on the board of directors for Deseret News and Workers Compensation Fund of Utah, as chair of the Judicial Conduct Commission for the State of Utah, and was the first female president of the Utah Trial Lawyers Association. Sister Renlund was raised in the Salt Lake area and became interested in law at a young age by observing the work of her father—a trial attorney. In her talk, she shared insightful lessons about “law” and “life” that she learned from her father.

The first lesson is to learn to disagree without being disagreeable. She has learned to not take an opposing opinion personally. Even adversaries can be friends. (She noted that one of the reasons her father enjoyed his work is because he felt that he got to work with his friends!) A case will progress faster and results will be better if attorneys can learn to get along. Learning to disagree without being disagreeable makes life more enjoyable.

The second lesson is “the first rule of holes”—when you’re in a hole, stop digging. It may seem difficult to get out of a hole, but digging only makes it worse. Sister Renlund shared real-life examples of the dangers when attorneys attempt to “dig” their way out of “holes” or mistakes instead of owning and fixing them. In her experience, admitting a mistake only reinforces others’ trust in you, rather than destroying it. On this note, she bore testimony of the power of repentance—expressing her belief that God believes in the first rule of holes.  

The third lesson that Sister Renlund taught is the importance 
of reputation: You only have one reputation—work hard, be prepared, and follow the rules. Sister Renlund shared how important each of these elements has been in creating an enriching career in law. She also taught the importance of maintaining a consistent character of integrity—whether at work, church, or elsewhere. According to Sister Renlund, when we settle our hearts and minds on being a disciple of Jesus Christ, a good reputation will follow.

Expressing her belief that these lessons apply to law and to life, she closed with a note of humor and wisdom—hoping that, “with any luck, we will all stop practicing law before we stop practicing life!” As to “life”—and speaking to her own experiences serving with her husband in the Church—she believes that “there is nothing more important in life than preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ.”

If you did not get a chance to view the fireside live, the video of the fireside will soon be available on jrcls.org—with details to follow.

By Megan J. Nelson, Media Committee
Posted: January 27, 2017