2.5 Minutes with Jim List

From the Baltimore Business Journal:

You work mostly in estate planning, but you are active in developmental disability issues. How did that get into your practice?

My mom was a special education teacher, my dad always did charitable work, including refereeing for the Special Olympics. So a lot of it was the mentoring by my parents to look out for those with special needs.

What does that work entail?

Oftentimes it’s services for the working poor. They need advice for Social Security disability, they need advice for estate planning. If we get a person with Down syndrome working, they can only make so much money, they can only work so much, before they lose their benefits. So we want to encourage them to work, but we have to balance that against the benefits they receive.

What satisfies you in doing this?

You can’t put a price on helping people in need. We as attorneys are encouraged to do public service and this is where I do my public service. A good part of the work I do for the disabled community is pro bono. These are society’s most needy and there is a real joy in using my talents and skills to help people achieve, succeed, thrive.

What are you avoiding today?

Cleaning my office, which we are scheduled to do today. We have had a lot of litigation in the last couple of years and things tend to pile up. Cleaning and filing, those are my nemeses – which is funny because I am a very organized person, in a somewhat disheveled way.

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