We believe we have the finest team of estate planning attorneys in the Washington DC area and with Michael Collins at the helm, he and his team of attorneys have been counseling clients for over four decades.
Attorney Profile: Michael T. Collins
Michael T. Collins, Esq., has been a member of the Bar for over forty years, and drafted his first Revocable Living Trust in 1966. Since then he has been through bull markets, bear markets, good times and bad. He has seen tremendous change in the laws of estate and trust taxation, coped with probate systems on both coasts, and through the years has guided his clients through a wide array of planning challenges.
As a husband, father, and grandfather himself, Mr. Collins is well acquainted with the problems and opportunities presented in providing security and protection for spouses, children and grandchildren. Having suffered with his own father through a difficult final illness, he is particularly sensitive to the concerns we all share about the medical problems of aging, both for ourselves and our loved ones.
Mr. Collins is a member of the Bars of Virginia, Maryland and California, of the American Bar Association Section on Real Property, Probate and Trust Law, of the Virginia State Bar Section on Wills, Trusts, and Estates, of the Senior Lawyers Section of the Virginia Bar, of the Trust and Estate Section of the Maryland Bar, and of the Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Section of the State Bar of California. He has taught and lectured on real estate and estate planning topics from the University of California to audiences in Northern Virginia and Maryland. Mr. Collins now hosts the popular “Legally Speaking” radio program Saturday mornings at 9 a.m. on WMAL-AM 630 in Washington D.C. or www.wmal.com online. He has appeared frequently on both local and national T.V. shows devoted to estate planning.
Mr. Collins obtained his B.S. in Engineering Science from the University of Notre Dame in 1961, and his Juris Doctor from Georgetown University Law Center in 1964, where he served as an Editor of the Georgetown Law Journal.
Louis E. Johannes, Esq. has a diverse background as an estate planner, business lawyer and published author. A graduate of Catholic University School of Law, with a Masters degree from George Washington University, Mr. Johannes was associated with both a large national firm in Washington and a small suburban office in Pennsylvania before affiliating with The Collins Firm. He is a member of the Maryland and Pennsylvania Bars.
Damian J. O’Connor, Esq. possesses a distinguished legal pedigree. One of ten children whose father and two brothers are attorneys, he is a University of Virginia graduate with a J. D. from Hofstra University School of Law. Mr. O’Connor has concentrated throughout his career in property law and estate planning. He is a member of the Bars of Maryland and Virginia, enrolled in the Trusts and Estate Section of the latter.
Phillip J. Kenny, JD, CFP has served over ten thousand clients for The Collins Firm and is one of the most experienced estate planners in the metropolitan area. Mr. Kenny earned a B.S. in Biology from Marquette University, a M.A. in Economics from Fordham University, and his J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. Mr. Kenny is a member of the Trusts and Estates Sections of the Maryland, Virginia and District of Columbia Bars, and of the American Bar Association Section on Real Property, Probate and Trust Law. He has been with The Collins Firm since 1994, and is a frequent guest host of Mr. Collins’ radio program on WMAL, “Legally Speaking.” Mr. Kenny is also a Certified Financial Planner, focusing exclusively on the estate-planning and tax aspects of the financial planning process.
Daniel G. Kaplan, Esq. has written extensively about estate and retirement planning issues for national publications. With a J.D. and a Master of Laws in Taxation from Georgetown University Law Center, Mr. Kaplan is an expert in compensation, benefits and tax issues. He has drafted over ten thousand Estate plans for clients of the firm. He is a member of the Bars of the District of Columbia and Maryland.
Rodney D. Garcia, Esq. a frequent writer and speaker on estate planning and taxation issues, has served as a columnist for the Profit Sharing/401(k) Council of America, as a Law Instructor at Catholic University of America and as a Tax Editor for the prestigious Research Institute of America. Mr. Garcia is a graduate of the University of Virginia Trial Advocacy Institute. He earned his J.D. at George Washington University and is a member of the Bars of Maryland, Virginia, California and the U.S. Tax Court.
James J. Collins, Esq. is admitted to the Bars of Maryland and Virginia, having obtained his B.A. from Mary Washington College and his J.D. from the University of Richmond, where he earned honors for his work in Professional Responsibility and Elder Law. Author of an award-winning monograph, “A Crash Course in Retirement Plan Distribution Rules for the Estate Planning Attorney,” Mr. Collins is a member of the Wills, Trusts and Estates Section of the Virginia Bar and is a regular guest host of the “Legally Speaking” radio show on WMAL.
Melissa L. McLaughlin, Esq. earned her J.D. at Thomas Jefferson School of Law, where she was Managing Editor of the Law Review, and her Master of Laws in Taxation and Certification in Estate Planning at Georgetown University Law Center. With a B.S. in Economics cum laude from the University of Arizona and a Certification in English Language Teaching from Cambridge University, she is especially qualified as the principal drafter of documents for the firm. She is a member of the Virginia Bar whose legal background includes several years of private practice as well as an honors internship with the FBI’s Office of the General Counsel and service with the Public Defender’s office in San Diego, California.
Elizabeth Martell Walsh, Esq. earned her J.D. from the University of Virginia, where she served on the Editorial Board of the Virginia Law Review and was elected to the Order of the Coif. She holds an M.A. in Government from Georgetown University, from which she also graduated cum laude with a B.S. in Foreign Service. Mrs. Walsh clerked for the Honorable James C. Cacheris of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia and was an associate with Covington and Burling in Washington, D.C. She is a member of the Bars of Virginia and the District of Columbia.
Tara Moriarty Schiller, Esq. a cum laude graduate of Wellesley College, earned her J.D. at Georgetown University Law Center. Upon graduation she served as law clerk to the Honorable John H. Suda of the D.C. Superior Court, after which she was associated with major firms in Washington and London, England between 1995 and 2001. Mrs. Schiller is a member of the Bars of Maryland and the District of Columbia.
Joseph D. Roberts, Esq., with a J.D. from George Washington University, is a senior attorney who came to The Collins Firm after a distinguished career practicing before both federal and state courts, including arguing numerous cases before the Supreme Court of Virginia. He has lectured widely to fellow professionals, served as a counselor for the Virginia Insurance Advocacy program, and is a volunteer in the Virginia Guardianship Association and for the Arlington County Agency on Aging. He is a member of the Bars of Virginia and the United States Supreme Court.